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Beef, Poultry, Biotech Among Initial Focuses of U.S.-China Trade Action Plan

Monday, May 15, 2017
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

Agricultural trade, financial services, and energy will be among the issues the U.S. and China focus on first under a 100-day action plan they concluded earlier this year. There are other issues that “will require significant effort to resolve and achieve progress on within the 100-day period,” a joint statement said, and the two sides will work to achieve resolution on those issues as soon as possible. In addition, as concrete progress is made in implementing the actions under the 100-day plan, officials intend to begin discussing a one-year plan to further promote bilateral economic engagement and cooperation.

The initial actions under the 100-day plan include the following.

Beef. Following one more round of technical consultations China is to allow imports of U.S. beef under specified conditions beginning as soon as possible but no later than July 16.

Poultry. The U.S. and China are to resolve outstanding issues for U.S. imports of China-origin cooked poultry as soon as possible, after which the U.S. is to publish a rule no later than July 16 and realize imports of China-origin poultry as soon as possible.

Biotechnology. By the end of May China’s National Biosafety Committee is to conduct science-based evaluations of all eight pending U.S. biotechnology product applications to assess the safety of the products for their intended use. For the products that pass these evaluations China is to grant certificates within 20 working days. For those that do not the NBC is to inform the applicants of the additional information needed and then finalize its reviews of resubmitted applications without undue delay.

Liquefied Natural Gas. The U.S. said it will treat China no less favorably than other non-free trade agreement trade partners with regard to LNG export authorizations and that companies from China may proceed at any time to negotiate all types of contractual arrangements with U.S. LNG exporters, including long-term contracts.

Financial Services. Actions to be taken by July 16 include the following.

- China is to allow wholly foreign-owned financial services firms in China to provide credit rating services and to begin the licensing process for credit investigation.

- China is to issue any further necessary guidelines and allow wholly U.S.-owned suppliers of electronic payment services to begin the licensing process and is to continue to allow Chinese banks to issue dual brand-dual currency bankcards that allow U.S. EPS suppliers to process foreign currency payment card transactions.

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