China won't give in to US demands to ease curbs on tech firms: Report
Ahead of fresh high-level trade talks this week, China is not conceding to US demands to ease curbs on technology companies, the Financial Times reported yesterday, citing three people briefed on the discussions.
US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are scheduled to travel to Beijing for talks starting on March 28, the White House said on Saturday.
The report said Beijing had yet to offer "meaningful concessions" to US requests for China to stop discriminating against foreign cloud computing providers, to reduce limits on overseas data transfers and to relax a requirement for companies to store data locally.
China made an initial offer on digital trade that the US judged as insufficient, the report said, citing a source.
China then retracted the offer after the US demanded stronger pledges, the report said, without giving further details.
US President Donald Trump said on Friday that the talks aimed at resolving the trade dispute were progressing and a final agreement seemed probable.
In a related development, Mr Clete Willems, a top trade official in the White House who has been a key figure in negotiations with China, is leaving his post for family reasons, he said on Friday.
The former lawyer, who is joining the private sector, had the challenging task of explaining Mr Trump's controversial approach to international economic policy to the world in recent months.
Mr Willems is a deputy to Mr Trump's top economic adviser, Mr Larry Kudlow. - REUTERS