Trump Says U.S. Will End Special Trade, Immigration Deals With Hong Kong
Added 05-29-20 05:21:02pm EST - “President Donald Trump announced a significant escalation of his administration's conflict with the Chinese government?"a conflict that is increasingly looking less like a trade war and more like a cold war.” - Reason.com
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President Donald Trump on Friday announced a significant escalation of his administration's conflict with the Chinese government—a conflict that is increasingly looking less like a trade war and more like a cold war.
In a press conference, Trump announced that the U.S. would end its special relationship with Hong Kong—since Hong Kong rejoined China in 1997, the U.S. has maintained separate trade, customs, and immigration agreements with the city than it has with the rest of China. The move effectively cements China's control over Hong Kong and jeopardizes billions of dollars of annual trade.
"Hong Kong is no longer sufficiently autonomous to warrant the special treatment that we have afforded the territory," Trump said outside the White House. "My announcement today will affect the full range of agreements we have with Hong Kong," including extradition and export rules.
More than 1,300 American companies have business operations in Hong Kong, and there are more than 85,000 U.S. citizens living in Hong Kong, according to a Reuters analysis. Terminating the city's special status means the much stricter Chinese visa and travel rules will likely apply to Americans who travel there (more on that should be released in the coming days).
Hong Kong could also lose its special preferential status for trade, which would be a major blow on both sides of the Pacific. Previously, Hong Kong imported American goods with zero tariffs, and last year the U.S. had a $26 billion trade surplus with the territory. That's all at risk now.
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