U.S. authorities continue to monitor the Coronavirus outbreak.
Many fear its impact will extend to greater lengths, hindering China’s ability to uphold promises made between the United States and China in a Phase One trade deal.
U.S.-Taiwan Business Council members strive to develop the trade and business relationship between the United States and China. Rupert Hammond-Chambers, president of the Council, says it’s China’s responsibility to follow-through on commitments made.
“There is a lot of empathy towards the situation they are confronting, but that should not disrupt the political commitment they have made to secure significant amounts of American goods,” Hammond said.
Chinese officials agreed to purchase up to $80 billion worth of United States agricultural products over the next two years.
Hammond-Chambers adds China would struggle to import U.S. farm and manufactured goods if the virus spread to key transportation “choke-points,” such as ports.
Dave Salmonsen, trade adviser for the American Farm Bureau Federation, speaks to the agreement, which will soon go into effect.
“(It) doesn’t officially begin for a few more weeks,” Salmonsen said. “This is their Lunar New Year time. From what I’ve heard, business activity normally slows down a little bit.”
Salmonsen hopes American and Chinese officials will extend the agreement by agreeing to a Phase Two deal.
“(I) certainly hope it continues on after that. Specifics of Phase One are for 2020 and 2021. We’re certainly looking forward to and want to have the second phase start at some point. Hopefully later this year,” Salmonsen said.