WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S. — China is expected to purchase 5 million tonnes of U.S. soybeans as trade negotiations between the two countries continue, according to U.S. President Donald Trump.
Speaking from the White House on Jan. 31, Trump described the soybean purchase as a “fantastic sign of faith.”
“They started on a small scale, and today they’re starting very big, and I very much appreciate that,” Trump said.
China, the world’s largest buyer of soybeans, also purchased an estimated 5 million tonnes in the weeks after the countries declared a 90-day trade war truce in December to reopen negotiations.
In July, Trump announced 25% tariffs on various Chinese products. China responded with retaliatory tariffs on U.S. products, including soybeans.
Prior to the trade war, China was the top buyer of U.S. soybeans, purchasing 30 million to 35 million tonnes per year.
The countries have been holding talks in Washington in recent days, and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer are scheduled to travel to Beijing to continue negotiations.
In early December Trump and Xi agreed to suspend further tariff increases before March 1, but if they cannot reach a deal by that date, the United States has threatened to raise tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods from 10% to 25%.