China December tariffs still on: sources

Delaying or discarding the tariffs is not out of the picture if China and the U.S. can get an agreement on paper

The U.S. is still set to impose Dec. 15 tariffs on Chinese goods as the two countries try to come to an agreement for a "phase one" trade deal, two trade sources told FOX Business.

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Delaying or discarding the tariffs is not out of the picture, however, if China and the U.S. can get an agreement on paper.

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Dec. 15 is a deadline of sorts for negotiators, as 15 percent tariffs on about $160 billion worth of Chinese exports to the U.S. are scheduled to go into effect.

"Well, unless there's some real reason to postpone them. If there were a little bit of time needed for more talks we probably would postpone it," Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told CNBC on Tuesday. "Enough substantive progress had been made, [President  Trump] might really have to look at the exact situation as we get a little closer to that time."

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross walks into the East Room of the White House before a news conference with President Trump and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Chinese negotiators have called for the U.S. to roll back tariffs as part of a phase one agreement, something President Trump has said he won't do. The U.S. has placed tariffs on more than $350 billion of Chinese goods amid the more-than- 17-month-long trade war.

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Meanwhile, a recent survey revealed a quarter of multinational companies have no contingency plans should the U.S.-China trade war become more dire.

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FOX Business' Edward Lawrence and Jonathan Garber contributed to this report.