Trump Delays The International Trade Apocalypse. Again.

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Having delayed an increase in tariffs on Chinese goods from 10 to 25 percent on January 1st of this year, Trump has once again delayed an increase that was scheduled to take place on March 1st.

Like he did before in November of 2018, Trump cited elusive if not non-existent progress in talks with China to justify the delay.

From Reuters:

After a week of talks that extended into the weekend, Trump said those tariffs would not go up for now. In a tweet, he said progress had been made in divisive areas including intellectual property protection, technology transfers, agriculture, services and currency.

As a result, he said: “I will be delaying the U.S. increase in tariffs now scheduled for March 1. Assuming both sides make additional progress, we will be planning a Summit for President Xi and myself, at Mar-a-Lago, to conclude an agreement. A very good weekend for U.S. & China!”

Neither Trump or the White House have cited exactly what "progress" has been made.

Neither Trump or the White House have said how long the increase in tariffs would be delayed for.

With that said, I can't call this anything but good news because an increase in tariffs from 10 to 25 percent would have destroyed many people lives and livelihoods and could have even caused a recession.

We can reset the clock, but we can't cancel the apocalypse because there's no guarantee a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping will be any more productive than Trump's summits with Kim Jong-un. A possible increase in tariffs on Chinese goods is still looming on the horizon as are possible tariffs on foreign cars and parts.

  • muselet

    Donald Trump probably actually believes there has been significant progress made in negotiations with China. I can’t decide if that’s sad or terrifying.

    I do wonder if Trump will treat Xi Jinping to “the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake that you’ve ever seen” again at the end of their meeting.