President Donald Trump has confirmed the ongoing trade talks with China have made some progress with the announcement he intends to continue the stalled talks past their original March 1 deadline.
Trump has also moved the once "immovable" March 2 deadline for a new round of punitive tariffs on China to take effect at an unspecified later date. Originally, U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of imports from China were to increase to 25 percent from 10 percent on March 2 if China and the U.S. couldn't reach a deal by then.
As it stands, the latest round of trade talks that ended last week have reached another impasse. Both sides haven't gotten to drafting an accord or a memorandum of understanding specifying the matters they agree and disagree on.
On Sunday, Trump announced that the U.S. will delay imposing additional tariffs on China on March 2, saying both sides will again try to work out a clear end to the trade war. In characteristic fashion, Trump tweeted success claiming "substantial progress" in bilateral talks with China.
In his first tweet, Trump said he is "pleased to report that the U.S. has made substantial progress in our trade talks with China on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues.
Because of these "very productive talks, I will be delaying the U.S. increase in tariffs now scheduled for March 1. Assuming both sides make additional progress, we will be planning a Summit for President Xi and myself, at Mar-a-Lago, to conclude an agreement. A very good weekend for U.S. & China!"
The only concrete achievement thus far for the U.S. is China's intent to purchase up to $1.2 trillion in U.S. goods. Both sides have made no headway whatsoever concerning the forced transfer of technology required by China of its business partners and China's lack of respect for the intellectual property rights of firms doing business within its borders.
Trump first confirmed the talks had hit a wall last week when he let slip he could let the deadline for a trade agreement "slide for a little while." He said at the time he'd prefer not to set a new deadline but still expects to meet with Xi to close the deal.
Trump's advisers had previously told him March 1 was a "hard deadline" it would be impossible to meet.
U.S. businesses and lawmakers have kept urging a delay in the tariff hike while both sides tackle the tough Trump demands for major structural policy changes by China. They also want more time to solve the issue of ending China's forced transfer of American trade secrets. Then there's the question of curbing China's industrial subsidies and China respecting intellectual property rights.
This article originally appeared in IBTimes US.