(WASHINGTON) JUST IN: The US has announced plans to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada a move France says is “unjustifiable and dangerous” #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceNews – May.31: The US has announced plans to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada: The source, who preferred to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity of the situation, said the tariff decision is coming this morning and is “99.9” percent done. The U.S. expects the EU will retaliate in due course #AceFinanceDesk reports

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Metal producers in the countries affected had been granted a temporary exemption from the tariffs earlier this year, but they are due to expire Friday:

The tariffs were originally announced on March 1 when President Donald Trump said that the United States was being treated unfairly.

“People have no idea how badly our country has been treated by other countries. By people representing us who didn’t have a clue,” Trump said, arguing that trade trends “destroyed” American steel and aluminum industries.

On Wednesday, a trade delegation led by U.S. Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, met with European Union counterparts in Paris but those talks appear to have failed.

Prior to the expected announcement, the French Finance Minister, Bruno Le Maire, said Thursday that Europe would take “all necessary measures” to respond. The EU has previously said it will impose its own tariffs on U.S. products such as motorcycles and jeans.

That message has been reinforced by the German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz who said in an interview with Reuters Thursday that the EU’s response to the tariffs must be “clear, strong, and smart.”

When asked if there were any signs that the trade dispute could be resolved Scholz added: “No, there are no such signs.”

#Breaking144 – US plan to impose steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada, Mexico, and EU is ‘99.9%’ done and expected to come later this morning, a source tells @EamonJavers. https://t.co/AF95saMsZl https://t.co/CnwJkbVewb https://t.co/jC9etaEg12: The US has announced plans to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from the European Union, Mexico and Canada. #AceFinanceNews

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(BEIJING, China.) Talks between China and Sri Lanka for a free trade agreement have hit major hurdles, mainl y because Beijing will not agree to Colombo’s demand for a review of the deal after 10 years, Sri La nka’s top negotiator said on Thursday #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.31: China has invested billions of dollars building ports and roads and power stations in the Indian Ocean island nation just off the southern toe of India as part of its Belt and Road Initiative to increase its trade and other connections across Asia and beyond: But concerns have grown in recent months that such investments can drive the country of 21 million people deeper into debt and undermine its sovereignty, prompting greater scrutiny of deals with China #AceFinanceDesk reports

China’s exports to Sri Lanka dwarf the trade that goes in the other direction, leaving Colombo with a big deficit with Beijing: Sri Lanka’s chief trade negotiator K.J. Weerasinghe said this week that Colombo was insisting on a right to review the free trade pact after ten years, but China was not ready to agree that.

Ministerial level discussions about an agreement have not been held since March last year. Lower-level discussions between officials have made little progress, according to Weerasinghe.

“The talks have come to a standstill. China wants to remove the review clause,” Weerasinghe told Reuters. Beijing was opposed to such an option because it wanted longer-term stability, he said.

China’s commerce ministry did not respond to Reuters requests for comment.

The review clause that Sri Lanka wants would allow it to change some of the deal terms if they were hurting the island nation’s local businesses.

ANOTHER CONTENTIOUS ISSUE

Weerasinghe said another point of contention was that China wanted zero tariffs on 90 percent of goods the two countries sold to each other as soon as an agreement is signed while Colombo would rather it started with zero tariffs on only half of the products concerned and expanded gradually over 20 years.

China has been pushing for free trade pacts with countries in the region and last year sealed an agreement with the Maldives that drew criticism from opposition political groups in the tropical islands’ nation. They said it had been rushed through parliament with less than an hour of debate.

Sri Lanka has previously said it wanted more time to negotiate the free trade deal with China as it is concerned about the economic impact of a rushed deal on its economy.

Sri Lanka imported $4.2 billion worth of Chinese goods in 2016, mostly raw materials for garments, machines and electronics, metals, transport equipment and chemicals. Its exports to the world’s second largest economy were just $211 million the same year, which included textiles, tea and vegetables, footwear and rubber.

The 2017 figures for China trade have still not been released by the Sri Lankan authorities.

The trade deficit with China accounted for nearly half of the nation’s total deficit in 2016, adding pressure on the country’s current account deficit, central bank data showed.

Sri Lanka’s foreign debt rose nearly 17 percent to 4.72 trillion rupees ($30 billion) last year, a fifth of that coming from loans from China to finance the massive construction program across the island.

Colombo is separately negotiating a trade pact with India, but that is also moving slowly because Sri Lankan businesses fear they will face competition from a flood of cheap goods made by Indian firms.

#Breaking144 Just tweeted Exclusive: China’s free trade talks with Sri Lanka hit major hurdles https://t.co/PxQoO0RIJe https://t.co/MRHBWEwVjE: Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani and Martin Howell #AceFinanceNews

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(TEHRAN, Iran.) Offers French company Total Oil 60-days to secure US sanctions waiver or Iran’s oil minister, Bijam Namdar Zanganeh, says China’s CNPC will take over investment contract #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.31: French energy company Total has two months to secure an exemption from US sanctions if it wants to remain as an investor in Iran’s offshore gas exploration, the country’s oil minister said: Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) would take over if the US Department of Treasury failed to issue a waiver for Total #AceFinanceDesk reports

“During these 60 days, the French government can negotiate with the US government over the fate of Total’s investment in Iran,” the Tehran-based Mehr news agency quoted Zanganeh as saying on Wednesday: On May 16, Total announced that it might pull out of its investment in the South Pars gas field if it cannot secure a waiver from the US government.

US secondary sanctions against Iran are expected to snap back after President Donald Trump declared the country’s withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal.

Trump also warned that even foreign companies doing business in Iran could face punitive measures in the United States.

That includes Total, which signed a deal to invest more than $2bn in Iran in July 2017.

CNPC owns an estimated 30 percent of the project, while the rest is owned by Iran’s Petropars. If completed, the project will generate 56 million cubic metres of natural gas per day, according to Iran’s Financial Tribune.

Total is a publicly listed company in the New York Stock Exchange, and its revenue in 2017 was reported at $171.5bn.

The latest development on Total comes as Russia’s second oil producer, Lukoil, announced on Tuesday that it was putting its plan to invest in Iran on hold due to threats of US sanctions.

“Considering the latest developments, I guess, it’s too early to say what our plans (about Iran) will be. For the moment, basically, we have everything on hold,” a company official was quoted by Reuters as saying.

Russia is one of Iran’s closest allies: European powers still see the nuclear accord as the best chance of stopping Tehran from acquiring a nuclear weapon and have intensified efforts to save the pact.

Zanganeh also said on state television that an agreement with Europe would inspire other potential buyers of Iranian oil.

“Europe is buying only one-third of Iranian oil, but an agreement with Europe is important to guarantee our sales, and find insurance for the ships ferrying the crude. Other buyers would also be inspired by this,” he said.

Iran offers Total oil company 60 days to secure US sanctions waiver https://t.co/sXN0MjANtn pic.twitter.com/StWdX18we2
— Al Jazeera English May 31, 2018

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(WASHINGTON) Latest: In March 2018, the US gave Rwanda 60 days’ notice that it would be suspending the landlocked country from selling clothes to America duty free – a status it enjoys under the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) those 60-days have now expired and tariffs will now apply #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.30: US President Donald Trump’s “America First” stance on global trade has hit Rwanda, by imposing tariffs on clothing exports from the tiny East African nation: The issue revolves around an obscure import, second-hand clothes, and Rwanda’s refusal to back down from the fight: ………..Agoa is the flagship US trade legislation designed to boost trade and investment in qualifying African countries by granting duty-free access to 6,500 exported products………”The president’s determinations underscore his commitment to enforcing our trade laws and ensuring fairness in our trade relationships,” Deputy US Trade Representative CJ Mahoney said at the time…………Those 60 days have now expired #AceFinanceDesk reports

US President Donald Trump (R) and Rwanda's President Paul Kagame attend a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting on January 26, 2018AFPDonald Trump and Paul Kagame did not seem too close when they met in January

Why did Rwanda ban the import of second-hand clothing?

The idea is to protect its nascent garment and textile industry.

Many African nations were once home to vibrant textile industries. But decades of mismanagement, instability, and increased global competition have taken a toll.

This can be seen in Ghana, where a study found that market liberalisation the 1980s had led to a sharp drop in textile and clothing jobs – from 25,000 people in 1977 to just 5,000 in 2000.

Kenya had half a million garment workers a couple of decades ago. Today that number is in the tens of thousands.

Second-hand clothing is one factor in the near-collapse of the garment industry in sub-Saharan Africa. The West’s cast-offs were so cheap that local textile factories and self-employed tailors could not compete.

According to a study by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), in 2015 the East African Community (EAC) accounted for nearly 13% of global imports of used clothing, worth $274m (£205m).

Around 67% of the population in East Africa purchased at least a portion of their clothes from used clothing markets, the USAID study found.

People walk around Gikomba Market, East Africa's biggest second-hand clothing market, on July 10, 2014 in Nairobi.AFPUsed-clothing markets like Gikomba in Nairobi can be found across Africa

East African governments argued that domestic demand for locally made clothes was being suffocated by cheap, second-hand clothes.

So in 2015, countries in the EAC announced that second-hand apparel would be banned from their markets from 2019.

In Rwanda’s case, the government said wearing hand-me-downs threatened the dignity of its people.

Rwanda increased tariffs on imported used clothes from $0.20 (£0.15) to $2.50 (£1.90) per kg in 2016. The eventual aim is to phase out all used-clothes imports.

Its government hopes the move will help nurture their garment industry and create more than 25,000 jobs.

Why did this upset the US?

It began when a trade organisation in the US filed a petition with the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR).

The organisation, called the Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association (SMRTA), said that the EAC’s 2016 decision to phase out used-clothing would impose “significant economic hardship” on America’s used-clothing industry.

Linda Hjorth of Tucson mills through sweaters at Buffalo Exchange, a second hand clothing chain,Getty ImagesThe second-hand clothing industry in the US is believed to employ thousands

It estimated that EAC’s second-hand apparel ban could cost 40,000 US jobs and $124m (£93m) in exports.

Those figures have raised some eyebrows. According to Reuters, SMRTA has not publicly disclosed the survey of its members used to calculate the job losses in the US, saying it contains proprietary information.

“The EAC has disputed a lot of the statistics SMRTA has used,” Grant T Harris, who served as the principal adviser to former US President Barack Obama on issues related to Africa, told the BBC.

By March 2017, USTR threatened to remove four East African countries – Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda – from Agoa.

Why did Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania back out?

Threats proved strong enough to ward them off.

In mid 2017, Kenya said it would “comply” with Agoa and withdrew the proposed ban on used clothes.

Kenya’s benefits from Agoa are considerably higher than Rwanda: exports to the US amounted to nearly $600m (£450m) in 2017, compared to just $43m (£32m) for Rwanda.

The USTR explained in a press statement why Tanzania and Uganda capitulated: “The President is not suspending benefits for Tanzania and Uganda because each has taken steps toward eliminating prohibitive tariff rates on imports of used clothing and footwear and committed not to phase in a ban of these products.”

This picture taken on March 11, 2014 shows a view of the centre of the Rwandan capital, KigaliAFPRwanda aims to be a middle-income country by 2020

Is what the US doing fair?

Yes and no. The US has every right under Agoa to require countries to eliminate trade barriers, which is its stated aim.

“But that doesn’t make it the right thing to do,” Mr Harris said. “The broader goal of Agoa is to use trade to support development, economic growth.”

He added that the US provides duty-free access to its market to many other countries that have created barriers to US exports – this includes India and Brazil. “If the US wants to take a principled stance and pursue actions against every country that is blocking its product, that would make more sense.

“To take this particular approach with Rwanda, which is working towards becoming a middle-income country, is not consistent with the broader goals of Agoa even if it is consistent with the letter of the law.”

He said the best way forward was for the administration to negotiate with Rwanda without using Agoa “as a cudgel”.

How will this affect Rwanda?

While the US is not Rwanda’s largest export market, the move could hurt the country, Florie Liser, the former assistant US Trade representative for Africa, told the BBC’s Newsday programme.

“I visited a production facility where… 150 women were producing bags for Kate Spade specifically to come into the US market duty-free through Agoa,” Ms Liser said.

Man in a Kigali clothes marketRwanda’s used-clothes industry is worth nearly $20m

Those jobs might be at risk and tariffs could scare off investors seeking to take advantage of Agoa, she said.

Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame seems willing to sacrifice economic growth. “This is the choice we find that we have to make. As far as I am concerned, making the choice is simple [although] we might suffer consequences,” he said in 2017.

“Rwanda and other countries in the region that are part of Agoa, have to do other things – we have to grow and establish our industries.”

The real winner in this dispute will be China, experts say. Chinese exports of cheap, ready-made clothes to East Africa is worth $1.2 bn, according to the USAID survey.

This far outstrips the value of second-hand clothing imports, which are currently being bought by the poorest 40% of the population in East Africa.

“This will just open up more market space and greater dependency on them [China],” Mr Harris said. “The individuals buying the clothes won’t have the means to buy domestic-made apparel, so they are going to turn to cheap, ready-made clothes from China.”

What do Rwandans think about it?

Some Rwandans are not thrilled by their government’s tough policy.

The used-clothing market in Rwanda employs more than 22,000 people in 2016 and was worth $17m (£12m). That eco-system is struggling since President Kagame’s ban.

Mariam, a clothes buyer in Kigali, told the BBC’s Swahili service that the only thing you can find in clothes markets today is “Chinese clothes and they are very expensive”.

“I understand that Rwanda needs to develop its own industries, I support the ‘Made in Rwanda Campaign’, but we are yet to see these industries. It would have been fair if the government allowed second-hand clothes for the sake of the poor,” she said.

Second-hand clothes trader, Rulinda Elmass, said he was not against the plan to develop local industries. “But for now they are few, and almost non-existent.”

He said the fair thing would be to allow competition for second-hand clothes because “people should be allowed to have choices”.

“As for the US sanctions, I think this is a big problem glaring the country. Everyone will suffer.”

The US has imposed tariffs on Rwanda over an obscure import: Second-hand clothes.
BBC News – Home

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MARKETS REPORT: Wall Street reacts as Italian & Spanish crisis begins to bite and Trump announces $50-billion in China tariffs on Tuesday on ‘ goods and investments in US tech industries ‘ as fears rise of another ‘ financial crisis ‘ looming with some major players considering decampment to higher ground #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.29: The Dow falls more than 400 points as investors fear US-China trade tensions and Italy’s political crisis https://cnnmon.ie/2J1ldor after earlier at opening at 200 points, or 0.8%, down as political chaos in global markets. S&P 500 falls 0.7%. Energy stocks dip as oil loses 1% on concerns about OPEC and Russia pumping more: Also on Tuesday, the White House said the administration would proceed with its proposal to impose 25% tariffs on $50 billion worth of goods from China, and place new limits on Chinese investments in US high-tech industries #AceFinanceDesk reports

The decision comes after top administration officials have tried to dampen fears of a trade war: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said a trade war with China was “on hold” less than 10 days ago. And Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is expected in Beijing on Saturday to help ease trade tensions between the two major trading partners:

Beijing has previously pledged to retaliate against the 25 percent tariffs.

In a brief statement, the White House said the president plans to take “multiple steps” to protect domestic technology and intellectual property from certain “discriminatory and burdensome trade practices by China.”

The latest step follows a March report by the US Trade Representative Office, which undertook a seven-month investigation of China’s handling of technology transfers and intellectual property, according to the White House’s statement.

“The United States will implement specific investment restrictions and enhanced export controls for Chinese persons and entities related to the acquisition of industrially significant technology, the White House said in a statement.

The final list of covered imports subject to tariffs will be announced by June 15. Those tariffs will take effect “shortly thereafter.”

Proposed investment restrictions will be announced by June 30 and also take effect at a later date.

CNNMoney (New York) First published May 29, 2018: 9:16 AM ET: Last week, the administration said it would negotiate to avoid a trade war. https://cnnmon.ie/2JdDWAFpic.twitter.com/n6HO0St8r4: Breaking144 Just tweeted ********************************************** Wall Street futures fall as Italy, Spain worries turn investors risk averse https://t.co/BhsyrvlrSRhttps://t.co/fczlCQEW8x:https://t.me/SterlingPublishingPanel/158920 #AceFinanceNews

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(SANTA ANA, El Salvador.) Coffee Waste Is Now Fetching a 480% Premium Over Coffee Itself Prices for dried hu sks are outstripping those for beans: More than a decade later, coffee husk—or, as it’s bett er known, cascara—is having a moment #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.26: Aida Batlle grows coffee on her family’s farm in the hills surrounding El Salvador’s Santa Ana Volcano. Like generations before her, she had little use for the skin that encases the beans, so she’d turn it into cheap fertilizer or, more frequently, trash it. Then one day, walking past some husks drying in the sun, a smell hit her, a good smell: hibiscus and other floral aromas. It dawned on her, she says, that some value might be extracted from what she had long considered refuse. So she steeped the husks in hot water and had a taste. “Immediately I started calling customers to try it,” she says #AceFinanceDesk reports

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Aida Batlle performing a quality tasting of a cascara tea in Santa Ana, El Salvador.

Photographer: Juan Carlos for Bloomberg Businessweek

Starbucks Corp. recently introduced new drinks in the U.S. and Canada sweetened with cascara syrup, and offers a sugar topping made from the husk. Competitors such as Stumptown Coffee Roasters and Blue Bottle Coffee are adding it to their menus, too, as tea and a carbonated drink.

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At a Starbucks in Chicago’s Loop, a medium iced cappuccino with cascara foam goes for $4.75. (In case you’re wondering, that’s essentially a low-fat cappuccino whose foam and syrup have been spiked with an extract made from a blend of sugar and ground-up dried coffee husk.) “Starbucks is great at taking things and introducing it to the masses,” says Michael Schultz, co-founder and chief executive officer of Coffee & Tea Bar Holdings LLC, which operates two Fairgrounds Coffee & Tea locations in Chicago and is preparing to open others in Minneapolis and Los Angeles. “People are becoming more and more aware.” Fairgrounds recently completed its final testing for a cascara-laced specialty drink that will be priced at about $5.

Thanks to demand from these chains, the coffee husk now often fetches a higher price than the bean itself does. Batlle says she gets $7 for a pound of cascara, while the average price for coffee hovers around $1.20, the lowest in about two years, because of an oversupply of arabica beans.

Cascara contains little caffeine and has a less assertive taste than coffee. In addition to notes of hibiscus, it can have papaya or green apple flavors depending on how and where it’s cultivated, according to Batlle, who counts Blue Bottle among her customers. (Blue Bottle, owned by Nestlé SA, offers a Cascara Fizz soda as part of its noncoffee options.)

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The dried coffee husk is cleaned before it is packaged as cascara tea.

Photographer: Juan Carlos for Bloomberg Businessweek

Sam Sabori, national quality control and roasting manager for Chicago-based Intelligentsia Coffee, says he often associated cascara with heavier flavors like raisins and port. Recently, however, he says, he tried a more “tropical” variety out of Guatemala that stood out, and now the chain is considering cascara for its menu.

Cascara sales are still too small to measure. And while demand is growing right now, for farmers such as Batlle there’s still a risk that this will prove no more than a passing fad. “We don’t want to be buying 500 pounds one year and nothing the next year,” says Sabori. “We want this to be sustainable for everyone involved.”

Batlle’s volume of cascara sales have increased to “thousands of pounds a year,” and she says she has no fear that the commodity’s growing popularity will end up cannibalizing coffee. “Especially in this market of really low prices, it really helps,” she says.

(Removes mention of Stumptown in the fifth graph to reflect that the company is not one of Batlle’s customers.) https://t.co/CBHyjnrnlr https://t.co/PlYujpMGm7https://t.me/Bloomberg/210938

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(WASHINGTON) JUST IN: The Trump administration told lawmakers the U.S. government has reached a deal to put Chinese telecommunications company ZTE Corp back in business, a senior congressional aide said on Friday #AceNewsDesk reports

#AFNews – 26/05/18: US Reaches Deal To Keep Chinese Telecom ZTE in Business: The deal, communicated to officials on Capitol Hill by the Commerce Department, requires ZTE to pay a substantial fine, place U.S. compliance officers at the company and change its management team, the aide said:
image1.jpeg

Published on May 25, 2018 at 09:28AM: From a report: The Commerce Department would then lift an order preventing ZTE from buying U.S. products. ZTE was banned in April from buying U.S. technology components for seven years for breaking an agreement reached after it violated U.S. sanctions against Iran and North Korea…………….The Commerce Department decision would allow it to resume business with U.S. companies, including chipmaker Qualcomm Inc: #AceTelegramNews https://t.me/acenewsgroup/491523

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(WASHINGTON) JUST IN: Trump & Kim Summit: A commemorative coin featuring President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has been minted to mark a U.S.-North Korea summit next month #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AFNews – 22/05/18: The coin, which was struck by the White House Communications Agency (WHCA), bears Trump and Kim’s profiles and opposing U.S. and North Korean flags under the heading “Peace Talks,” Agence France-Presse reports. The coin also describes Kim Jong Un as “Supreme Leader.” The opposite face depicts Air Force One flying over the White House and the presidential seal with the title “Visit of the President.”Less than a month to Trump-Kim summit, White House Communications Agency (WHCA) releases its “trip coin.”#AceFinanceDesk reports


This is #74 of 250 made
. pic.twitter.com/UTEJg1GyWv— Peter Alexander (@PeterAlexander) May 21, 2018The WHCA has minted dozens of souvenir coins as gifts to visiting foreign dignitaries and military veterans, and are for sale in the White House gift shop. Deputy White House spokesperson Raj Shah said in a statement that the administration “did not have any input into the design and manufacture of the coin,” according to AFP: But this coin’s release awkwardly followed North Korea’s threat last week to cancel the historic talks, scheduled for July 12 in Singapore, saying that the country had no interest in “one-sided” negotiations to force Pyongyang to relinquish its nuclear weapons……….Trump sought to defuse those tensions last week, promising that Kim would remain in power should the talks go ahead: https://t.me/acenewsgroup/491243

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(NEW YORK) JUST IN: The New York Stock Exchange has named its first female leader in the history of the 226-year-old exchange on Monday night #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AFNews – 22/05/18: The parent company of the NYSE, Intercontinental Exchange Inc., told The Wall Street Journal Monday night that Stacey Cunningham will become the 67th president #AceFinanceDesk reports

She’s currently NYSE’s chief operating officer.Cunningham will start her new job on Friday. She succeeds Thomas Farley, who came to the NYSE in November 2013: Farley has announced he’s leaving Atlanta-based Intercontinental Exchange to lead a new special-purpose acquisition company.Cunningham first started at the NYSE as an intern in 1994…………………She tells The Wall Street Journal that she “loved the place right out of the gate” and now she’s “excited to be running it.” https://t.me/acenewsgroup/491245 #AceFinanceNews

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(WASHINGTON) Latest: Donald Trump stepped into a round of tough trade talks with China on Thursday after the White House confirmed a meeting between the U.S. president and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He: The two world powers are taking part in a second series of trade negotiations that started Thursday: The initial talks were held in Beijing two weeks ago #AceFinanceDesk reports

#AceFinanceReport – May.18: Speaking to reporters before his meeting with Liu, Trump repeated his strong dislike for previous deals between Washington and Beijing. “The United States has been ripped off for many, many years by its bad trade deals. I don’t blame China; I blame the leadership of this country from the past,” Trump told reporters before a meeting with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. “China has taken out hundreds of billions of dollars a year from the United States, and I explained to President Xi [Jinping] we can’t do that anymore,” Trump added #AceFinanceDesk reports

The talks are aimed at “rebalancing the United States-China bilateral economic relationship,” according to the White House: They are also aimed at avoiding a full-blown trade war after the two countries exchanged tariff threats in March. Despite the tough talks, Trump tweeted over the weekend that he was working with Xi to give Chinese phone company ZTE a way to get back into business: The U.S. slapped sanctions against the Chinese telecommunications company last month for breaking U.S. trade control laws by selling components to Iran and North Korea……………..The move prompted ZTE to shut down its U.S. operations. U.S. law enforcement and intelligence communities have long had national security and espionage concerns about ZTE. “ZTE was a company I spoke to with President Xi. ……………………He asked me if I could take a look at that, because it was very harmful to them in terms of their jobs and probably other things, and I certainly said I would — he asked me to do it, and I would do that. I like him, he likes me, we have a great relationship,” Trump said in explaining his tweet to reporters:

Trump noted it was his administration that had first put strong clamps on ZTE. “Anything we do with ZTE is just a small component of the overall deal. I can only tell you this: We are going to come out fine with China,” Trump said. “When you’re losing $500 billion a year on trade, you can’t lose the trade war, you’ve already lost it.” Liu, who is Xi’s top economic adviser, is taking part in two days of talks with a U.S. trade delegation led by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Trump’s top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, told reporters Wednesday that the administration was conducting “very serious” talks with China, and that Trump was “very hands-on” and “involved in every decision.” “We have requested that China change their trading practices, which are unfair and in many ways illegal,” Kudlow said. “This is with respect to the issue of theft of technology, forced transfers of technology, high tariffs and non-tariff barriers” that are preventing the United States from making a competitive effort to export goods and services to China, he said:

The economic adviser said the administration had given China a “lengthy, detailed list” of what the U.S. wanted, including narrowing the U.S.-China trade deficit, lowering non-tariff barriers and permitting American ownership of its own companies in China. “Right now, the limit is 49 percent and that’s one of the causes of the theft and transfer of viable technology,” Kudlow said. “When we do these joint ventures, we should have to own 51 percent on to 100 percent. That’s a key part of these talks.” https://t.me/acebreakingnews/788595
USA – Voice of America https://ift.tt/2La4qRC

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