‘Mini-trade deal’ between US, China expected to ease Chinese restrictions on GMO crops

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President Donald Trump has signed off on a mini-trade deal with China, four people familiar with the negotiations said on [Dec 12], marking another trade victory he can tout as he faces impeachment led by House Democrats.

The mini-deal is also expected to contain some new provisions that may be a boon for U.S. farmers battered by the trade war, flooding and disasters. Those include China giving up restrictions on growth hormones for beef and easing an approval process for genetically modified crops.

Before the tariff war, the value of U.S. agricultural exports to China in 2017 reached almost $20 billion. In 2018, that number dipped to $9.3 billion.

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Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), who served as President George W. Bush’s trade chief, acknowledged that a phase one deal wouldn’t “be everything.”

“It least it would be a step forward on agriculture and some structural issues,” he said. U.S. businesses view a preliminary deal as a welcome development after months of market whiplash caused by the tariff fight.

Read full, original article: U.S., China strike partial trade deal that cuts tariffs

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