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Breakdown in US-China trade talks exposes wider geopolitical tensions (Video)

Breakdown in US-China trade talks exposes wider geopolitical tensions (Video)

  • The Duran Quick Take: Episode 178.

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the diminishing state of US-China trade talks, which has resulted in the Trump White House raising tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods, and a Chinese has retaliation on imports from the United States.

Regardless of how the trade talks finally conclude, with a deal or a complete breakdown between the two parties, one thing is certain, the final outcome will have massive, global consequences on an economic and political scale.

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Via Zerohedge…


If there was any lingering doubt that President Trump has treated Huawei like a ‘bargaining chip’ during trade talks with the Chinese, Bloomberg just put the issue to rest.

In a report sourced to administration insiders, BBG reported that the Trump administration waited to blacklist Huawei until talks with the Chinese had hit an impasse, because they were concerned that targeting Huawei would disrupt the talks.

Plans to punish Huawei – including possible economic sanctions – had been kicking around for months. And prosecutors took their first tentative steps toward holding Huawei ‘accountable’ by convincing Canada to arrest Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou.

And once trade talks had broken down, there was a ‘scramble’ to implement the measures against Huawei.

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Though BBG doesn’t offer a definitive answer on this, it reports that some are suspicious that Trump is pressuring Huawei to ‘gain a negotiating edge’ with Beijing (meanwhile, the Chinese leadership are furious about the decision).

Timing of the U.S. action raised questions about whether President Donald Trump is punishing the company in part to gain a negotiating edge with Beijing in a deepening clash over trade. Talks between Beijing and Washington deadlocked this month as Trump accused China of backing out of a deal that was taking shape with U.S. officials, saying China reneged on an agreement to enshrine a wide range of reforms in law.

Another take on what happened suggested that the decision to hold back on Huawei actually came from the bureaucracy, as administration officials were worried President Trump would just scrap the measures as a favor to Xi, like he did last year with ZTE Corp. Those concerns haven’t entirely abated.

Washington has offered Huawei some wiggle room by suspending the new restrictions for 90 days. The company has been stockpiling chips, and reportedly already has enough to keep its business running for three months.

But this report effectively confirms that the administration wasn’t being entirely truthful when it said there was ‘no link’ between Huawei and the trade talks. Trump said back in December that he would go so far as to intervene in efforts to extradite Meng Wanzhou if it would help with the trade talks. And although that would be extreme, we should rule it out just yet.

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Smoking Eagle
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Smoking Eagle

“But this report effectively confirms that the administration wasn’t being entirely truthful when it said there was ‘no link’ between Huawei and the trade talks.”

I would be surprised if it were anything but entirely untruthful. Does anyone expect the U$ to be truthful?

SteveK9
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SteveK9

A small point. A lot of people make a big fuss about ‘rare earths’. Rare earths are not all that rare. The only reason China produces such a high percentage is that they invested money in mining them. They were selling them cheap, so why would others produce them? But, if they refuse to sell these materials to America, then they will just be mined elsewhere, including in the US. I think the Alex’s understand this.

BobValdez
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BobValdez

The point is being made that China COULD ban exports of rare eath metals. Other countries could supply the west if China cuts off supplies, but no one supplier or all of them together could cover the amount China exports. It takes YEARS to set up a rare earth metal refinery and years is what China has, if required. Rare earth metals are abundant, but SEPARATING them is big problem. Only China has these capabilities for large quantity.

Encyclopedia Statistica
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Encyclopedia Statistica

Don’t be so quick on the draw. China’s reserve base surpasses any other by a wide margin. It’d be like Chile banning crude iodine exports to the US. (research that one if you will) Not so easy for other nations to play catchup without severe market disruptions.
https://www.statista.com/statistics/277268/rare-earth-reserves-by-country/

Besides, iodine isn’t all that rare either, millions of tons in seawater, just try to extract it.

Let's Make a Deal
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Let's Make a Deal

Who would’a thunk that little ol’ Vietnam would have half the reserves of big ol’ China? Maybe they could trade rare earths for agent orange compensation?

tracy
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tracy

The damned markets have been a farce of monopolies hindering ingenuity or stealing it for a very long time. It’s about time they have been disrupted and make room for a real free market.

Regula
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Regula

On the US the soil is sufficient in iodine; it means meat vegetables have iodine in them.

tracy
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tracy

The Chinese obtain their rare earths in Africa via corrupt regimes that sell out their own citizens.

Guy
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Guy

Canada like the good vassal it is fell right into it .And we are now trapped because of our spineless leader and his so called foreign minister .

tracy
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tracy

Since Bush Sr was president our government, in The United States, has been pushing globalism to the detriment of our people. It’s about damned time that we take care of our own first. The Chinese government has prospered by allowing American monopolies to abuse their citizens as slave labor and to manufacture inferior and dangerous goods. Then they come to America where we are charged for these items as if they were of the quality when we produced them and they have done so duty free. We need to take care of our own interests just as the Chinese government… Read more »

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