SinoTech: U.S. and China Reach Agreement on Enforcement Provisions, Edging Closer to a Trade Deal

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin revealed last week on CNBC that U.S. and Chinese negotiators have reached agreement on an “enforcement mechanism” as part of negotiations over a bilateral trade deal. Mnuchin specified that both sides “will establish enforcement offices that will deal” with matters of compliance. Over the weekend, Mnuchin further underlined the two-way nature of the proposed enforcement system, noting that the U.S. is willing to face “repercussions” if it does not hold up its end of the trade deal. Robert Lighthizer, the U.S. trade representative, has yet to comment on recent progress over enforcement provisions, but if Mnuchin is right, that would mean negotiators have cleared one of the biggest hurdles to a potential trade deal. Lighthizer has consistently stressed the importance of effective enforcement mechanisms. In late February, he told the House Ways and Means Committee that negotiators had agreed to an enforcement…

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