China announced its first batch of tariff exemptions for 16 types of U.S. products, days ahead of a planned meeting between trade negotiators from the two countries.
However, U.S. farmers will be disappointed, as there are no agricultural items included in the list.
The exemptions will apply to U.S. goods including some anti-cancer drugs and lubricants, as well as the animal feed ingredients whey and fish meal, the Chinese Ministry of Finance said in on Wednesday.
The exempted list pales in comparison to over 5,000 types of U.S. products that are already subject to China’s additional tariffs.
Reuters reports that some analysts view the move as a friendly gesture but don’t see it as a signal that both sides are readying a deal.
“The exemption could be seen as a gesture of sincerity toward the U.S. ahead of negotiations in October but is probably more a means of supporting the economy,” ING’s Greater China economist Iris Pang was quoted as saying.
“There are still many uncertainties in the coming trade talks. An exemption list of just 16 items will not change China’s stance,” she said.