The Biden administration has placed the trade arrangement of former President Donald Trump with China “under review as it relates to our national security approach” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said.
A quickly escalating trade conflict between Washington and Beijing, which had shaken financial markets and contributed to billions of dollars in trade tariffs, was paused by the ‘step 1’ trade agreement signed in early 2020.
Under the provisions of the arrangement, which is generally perceived to be minimal, China vowed to raise its imports of US goods such as soybeans and energy products substantially.
China has also failed, nevertheless, to keep track of its buying obligations, causing trade observers to doubt whether it is realistic to keep the promises to purchase a targeted volume of US goods.
Jen Psaki, White House press secretary, said on Friday that “everything the past administration has put in place is under review,” when asked if Mr. Biden found the Phase 1 trade agreement to be already in force.
I wouldn’t assume that things are moving forward,” said Mrs. Psaki. “We’re just looking at what the path forward looks like, and we’re doing it again, from a position of strength, which means coordinating with our allies, members of Congress, and making a determination before we engage further.”
Under the parameters of the pact, China committed to purchasing more than $200 billion of US goods and services in 2017, until the launch of the trade dispute, over a two-year period until the end of 2021.
However, Chinese and US trade statistics indicate that Chinese imports of US goods are well below unofficially prorated expectations a full year after the agreement has been in place.
According to a study by the Peterson Institute for International Economics, just 58% of the US exports projected under its predictions were bought by Beijing, analysis of data at the end of last month.