US President Joe Biden on Saturday said he would be talking to Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) “soon,” and is weighing possible action on US tariffs on China that were imposed by the administration of former US president Donald Trump.
Asked whether he had decided to lift any of the tariffs, Biden said: “We’re in the process of doing that... I’m in the process of making up my mind.”
Biden’s administration is weighing what to do about Trump’s tariffs on about US$300 billion of goods imported from the US economy’s biggest competitor. While some businesses have benefited from protection from Chinese imports, companies that use the goods as inputs in areas including manufacturing have been hurt.
US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen last week told lawmakers that the Biden administration is looking to “reconfigure” the tariffs and said that they were contributing to higher prices for goods with US inflation running at the hottest pace in 40 years.
Biden declined to say when he would talk to Xi, saying only: “I’m going to be talking to him.”
US officials are working to set up a possible call this summer as tensions run high between the world’s two biggest economies, including on Taiwan, Ukraine and human rights matters.
One person familiar with planning said a potential summer call could come as soon as next month, but any in-person meeting of the two leaders would wait until after the China’s National Party Congress later in the year.
Xi, who is seeking to secure a third term, has also halted international travel since COVID-19 emerged more than two years ago.
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