A US-China trade deal is 'possible' by next Friday, sources say

Key Points
  • The U.S. and China may announce a trade deal by next Friday, sources tell CNBC.
  • The world's two largest economies have pushed for an agreement to end an ongoing trade dispute.
  • While Washington and Beijing have repeatedly cited progress in the talks, some sticking points have prevented a final agreement.
US-China deal 'possible' by next Friday: Sources
US-China deal 'possible' by next Friday: Sources

The announcement of a U.S. trade deal with China is "possible" by next Friday, sources told CNBC on Wednesday.

A U.S. delegation met with Chinese negotiators in Beijing on Wednesday as the world's two largest economies try to hammer out details of an agreement. Chinese Vice Premier Liu He will travel to Washington for talks next week.

Washington and Beijing have pushed to resolve a trade dispute that led to a series of tariffs and raised fears about spiraling economic damage. While both sides have repeatedly touted progress in the talks, disputes such as whether to immediately remove existing tariffs or keep them in place as an enforcement measure to stop practices such as intellectual property theft have derailed a final deal. President Donald Trump also wants China to buy more U.S. goods to reduce the trade deficit between the countries.

On Wednesday, the White House said the latest talks moved Washington and Beijing closer to an agreement. In a statement, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, "Discussions remain focused toward making substantial progress on important structural issues and rebalancing the US-China trade relationship."

Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Donald Trump greet attendees waving American and Chinese national flags during a welcome ceremony outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, on Nov. 9, 2017.
Qilai Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images

White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday that the U.S. should know "one way or the other in the next couple weeks" about how the trade talks will be resolved.

The White House did not immediately comment Wednesday on the possibility of a deal by next Friday.

Reports have suggested the Trump administration could yield on some provisions as part of the deal. In a final agreement, the U.S. could immediately remove a 10% duty on part of the $200 billion in Chinese goods on which it levied tariffs, Politico reported Wednesday.

Washington would keep a 25% tariff on $50 billion in goods until after the November 2020 election, according to the news outlet.

Investors have watched the ongoing talks closely. A prolonged trade dispute would damage U.S. businesses and the global economy.

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