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2018 in review

US-China trade war: a timeline from first tariffs to the 90-day truce

  • Ceasefire has yielded some positive signs as both sides engage in intense talks
PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 26 December, 2018, 1:26pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 26 December, 2018, 2:21pm

As the US and China approach the end of the first month of their 90-day truce, both sides have been engaging in intense talks to bring an end to the trade war.

While there have been positive signs – China has rolled back tariffs, made large orders on US products and released statements about “new progress” in trade talks – the truce comes after months of heightened tensions and escalating tariffs from both countries.

By the time Chinese President Xi Jinping met his US counterpart Donald Trump at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in November, the US had imposed tariffs on US$250 billion worth of Chinese goods.

As part of the ceasefire agreement, Trump held off on the scheduled increase in tariffs on US$200 billion in Chinese imports, and China agreed to buy a “substantial” amount of products from the US.

We take a look at the events that led up to the trade truce.