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Top Chinese Official Plans U.S. Trip to Address Trade Friction

Published on March 7, 2020 by Zeinab

BEIJING — President Xi Jinping of China is sending his top economic policymaker to Washington on Tuesday in a bid to reduce trans-Pacific trade tensions before China’s congress convenes for its annual session.

The trip by Liu He, who joined the Politburo in October and is widely expected to be named China’s vice premier for financial and industrial policy at the congress, comes as Trump administration officials have increased their criticism of Beijing’s trade policies in recent weeks. Mr. Liu’s trip was described by a person familiar with the planning who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Commerce Department declared a week ago that American imports of steel and aluminum from China and other countries were a threat to national security, suggesting several ways for President Trump to tax or otherwise restrict such goods.

Mr. Trump has considered imposing a “reciprocal tax” on countries, like China, that impose higher tariffs on their imports of American products than the United States levies on theirs.

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