China lambasts US for ‘flip flops’

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BEIJING (AFP) – China yesterday lambasted “sudden flip-flops” in US policy after President Donald Trump said he was moving to finalise trade sanctions against it – even as a US delegation arrived in Beijing for talks.

Ten days ago the White House announced a truce in trade hostilities with China, with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin saying that threatened tariffs on Chinese goods were “on hold”.

But on Tuesday evening it said that sanctions announced in March – largely focused on China’s theft of US intellectual property – were still in the works and details would be announced in the coming month.

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The announcement is another apparent change of course for Mr Trump, who veers from harsh threats to promises of compromise and back again on trade and other sensitive issues.

It comes as Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross prepares to travel to Beijing this week for another round of talks aimed at resolving the conflict.

Six members of his delegation had already arrived in Beijing as of yesterday evening, the US embassy confirmed to AFP.

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