US, CHINA REACH UNDERSTANDING ON TARIFF DEAL

BEIJING (AP) – President Barack Obama says the United States and China have reached an “understanding” in negotiations to eliminate tariffs on high-tech goods.

Obama says the breakthrough will help bring talks on the Information Technology Agreement to a “rapid conclusion.” Obama made the announcement during a meeting Tuesday with leaders attending an Asia-Pacific economic summit in Beijing.

U.S. officials say the progress with China includes an agreement to eliminate tariffs on goods like medical devices, semi-conductors and other high-tech instruments. The White House did not put a specific timeline on finalizing a broader agreement through the World Trade Organization.

Talks on the Information Technology Agreement broke down last summer. U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman says the deal would mark the first major tariff reduction agreement by the WTO in 17 years.

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