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Kudlow: China Has No Intention of Making Trade Deal

White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow gives a press briefing about upcoming G7 in the White House, June 6, 2018. (Kevin Lamarque)

White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow remarked Wednesday that China’s president does not seem to have any intention of making a trade deal with the U.S.

“I do not think President Xi at the moment has any intention of following through on the discussions we made, and I think the president is so dissatisfied with China on these so-called talks that he is keeping the pressure on, and I support that,” Kudlow said at the Delivering Alpha conference.

The former CNBC personality, a long-time free-market advocate, was explaining his support for President Trump’s tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese products, which went into effect July 6. China responded the same day with equivalent tariffs on U.S. products, and the Trump administration has since threatened to slap tariffs on $200 billion more in Chinese imports.

“I’m not a big fan of tariffs,” he began, but added that he believes Trump is doing “exactly the right thing here” and that “Xi is holding the game up. . . . The ball is in his court.”

 

Kudlow gave a preliminary list of terms the U.S. would look for in a trade deal with China.

“The tit-for-tat business — which is nobody’s favorite path, but nonetheless — they can end that this afternoon by providing a more satisfactory approach . . . tariffs down, non-tariff barriers down, IP [intellectual property] theft no, allow the American or British or German or whoever full ownership of companies.”

Despite the trade dispute with China, the White House adviser has high hopes for the improving American economy.

There is “no recession in sight right now,” he said, adding that America’s gross domestic product could even rise above 4 percent for one or two quarters.

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