On Wednesday, President Trump officially signed the Phase 1 Deal at the White House, taking the first major step in reducing trade tensions with China. In summary, the trade deal focused on increasing Chinese expenditure on American goods, reducing theft of American corporate technology, and eliminating currency manipulation. By signing this agreement both countries are notably making an effort to cooperate and reduce the economic strain felt by both countries and the world. Although the results of the agreement do not solve many of the important issues that the United States has with China politically, such as cyberattacks on American companies, Trump claims a Phase 2 deal will remedy these problems and strengthen our relationship with China. There is no specific date set for Phase 2 negotiations to begin, but based on activity from both governing bodies, Phase 2 discussions will not be until after elections.
Despite the low feasibility of a Phase 2 agreement being signed soon, the Phase 1 Deal already cements a good foundation for establishing fair trade between the two countries and ending the internationally damaging trade war. Chinese President Xi Jinping stated that the Phase 1 deal is “beneficial to both China, the U.S. — and the world,” showing the desire of China and the U.S. to cooperate as partners to globally release the economic strain that the trade war as caused. Although there are many critics of the Phase 1 Deal, pegging it as “underwhelming,” it positions both the US and China extremely well to resolve many long lasting problems in their political and economic ties.
Keith Knutsson of Integrale Advisors commented that, “The Phase 1 Deal represents hope for future negotiations that can not only generate greater wealth in China and the United States, but inherently help the world as well.”