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U.S., China sign landmark 'Phase One' agreement

WASHINGTON – With the stroke of a pen, the U.S. and China on Wednesday formalized a limited trade deal that signals a pause in the nearly two-year trade war between the world’s two largest economies and sets the stage for talks toward a broader agreement down the road.

The “Phase One” agreement, the product of months of negotiations between officials in Washington and Beijing, calls for China to boost its purchase of U.S. goods and services by $200 billion over the next two years, including $32 billion worth of agriculture products.

China also promised to undertake a series of changes to address U.S. concerns that it forces American companies to turn over their technology secrets as part of the cost of doing business there. The agreement also puts in place a system for resolving trade disputes between the two countries.

“Today we take a momentous step – one that has never been taken before with China – toward a future of fair and reciprocal trade,” President Donald Trump said during a White House signing ceremony with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He.

The details:What’s in Trump’s ‘Phase One’ trade deal between the U.S. and China?

Speaking through a translator, Liu read a message from Chinese President Xi Jinping, who said the deal “is good for China, for the U.S., and for the world.”

Trump said he would travel to China soon as the two sides attempt to negotiate a broader agreement to deal with unresolved issues, such as complaints that China subsidizes its companies to give them an unfair advantage over foreign businesses.

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