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China to waive import tariffs on some US soybean, pork shipments

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Friday 06 Dec 2019

LONDON (ShareCast) - (Sharecast News) - China said on Friday that it will waive import tariffs for some soybean and pork shipments from the US.
The country's finance ministry said the exemption applies to Chinese firms importing US soybeans and pork but did not specify quantities.

"The Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council is carrying out the exclusion of some soybeans, pork and other commodities based on applications from enterprises," the finance ministry said in a statement.

The Sino-US trade war kicked off last year when Washington slapped tariffs on $50bn worth of Chinese goods over alleged intellectual property abuses, leading China to retaliate and sparking a seemingly endless soap opera of tit-for-tat exchanges between the two nations.

Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, said China's decision to waive some tariffs "could be due to necessity from a shortage of pork because of African swine fever, more than desire to get a trade deal done, but nevertheless it's pointing in the right direction".

Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG, said China's decision to drop tariffs on some US pork and soybean imports provides "the first concrete step towards de-escalation seen for quite some time".

"From an optimistic standpoint, the Chinese decision to drop 25% tariffs previously imposed on pork and soybeans highlights a firm shift towards closing the gap needed to drag a phase one deal across the line."

However, he agreed with Wilson, arguing that it was also likely to be "a move of necessity", with the swine fever epidemic meaning that China has a pronounced undersupply of pork and proteins that needs addressing.