As the U.S. and China continue to work on an interim trade deal, on Thursday the Chinese commerce ministry said both countries have agreed to cancel existing tariffs in phases that were imposed during the trade war. It’s expected that a “phase one” trade deal would include the U.S. eliminating tariffs scheduled for Dec. 15 on about $156 billion worth of Chinese imports. However, on Friday morning, President Trump said he has not agreed to roll back the tariffs. As already announced, “phase one” would include a pledge for China to buy $40 billion-$50 billion in U.S. agricultural products, including pork. President Trump had hoped to sign the “phase one” trade agreement in mid-November while at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Chile, but the summit was cancelled due to domestic unrest. Numerous venue locations have been discussed, including domestically in Iowa and Alaska, as well as London, where Trump is scheduled to attend a NATO summit from Dec. 3-4. NPPC is seeking permanent removal of all punitive tariffs on U.S. pork. With African swine fever dramatically reducing domestic production in China, the United States is well positioned to meet the country’s need for safe, nutritious and affordable pork and to manage an emerging food price inflation challenge. In doing so, U.S. pork can single handedly put a huge dent in the United States’ trade imbalance with China.