US Secretary of Commerce (pictured during a meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang last year) is scheduled to arrive in Beijing on Saturday to continue trade negotiations. Photo: Reuters/Thomas Peter

Beijing is set to put into effect some of its harshest-ever steel-production cuts this week, just as the White House official who recently tried to broker a deal on steel arrives in China’s capital.

The first wave of cuts will halve the rate of production in China’s largest steel-producing city, Tangshan, which will ultimately affect 20 million metric tonnes, or about 7.5% of the national annual production, according to the Financial Times.

After his arrival in Beijing, US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said he hopes there will be some “very good deliverables” when President Trump visits China in November. Ross had reportedly helped work out a deal with Beijing for China to cut steel overcapacity by 150 million tonnes by 2022, ahead of the high-level economic dialogue held over the summer, but Trump rejected it, favoring tariffs instead.

Speaking to the media alongside Ross, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang stressed the two countries common interests, .

“In addition to that, China and the United States are the largest trading partners with each other, so I think it is fair to say that our common interests far outweigh our differences and divergences,” Li was quoted by Reuters as saying.

“Over the years, economic and trade relations between our two countries have always served as a ballast for our overall bilateral relationship and also these important trade and economic relations have benefited enormously our two peoples as well as the whole world.”

Chinese state media also quoted Li has expressing his hope that the US will give fair treatment to Chinese companies’ investments there, and ease restrictions on high-tech exports.

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