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US will delay tariff hike on Chinese-made cell phones, toys

Posted at 7:25 AM, Aug 13, 2019

The top US trade negotiator on Tuesday said that new tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese-made consumer goods including cell phones, toys and video game consoles would be delayed until December 15.

The move comes after a phone call between US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and top Chinese negotiator Liu He in which the parties agreed to pick up negotiations by phone within two weeks, according to a statement from the Chinese Commerce Ministry.

President Donald Trump said earlier this month that he would add a 10% tariff on an additional $300 billion of Chinese-made products on September 1, which would effectively put a tax on all Chinese goods coming into the United States.

Last year, Trump imposed tariffs on about $250 billion in Chinese-made goods, targeting industrial materials and components.

"Trade talks are continuing, and during the talks the U.S. will start, on September 1st, putting a small additional tariff of 10% on the remaining 300 billion dollars of products coming from China into our country," he tweeted at the time.

In a statement Tuesday, the Office of the US Trade Representative said that it was also recommending a delay in the tariff for certain products based on health, safety and national security reasons.