US President Donald Trump announced on Wednesday that he agreed to delay an increase in tariffs on US$250 billion worth of Chinese goods by two weeks, saying the decision was requested by Beijing.

“We have agreed, as a gesture of good will, to move the increased Tariffs on 250 Billion Dollars worth of goods (25% to 30%), from October 1st to October 15th,” Trump tweeted.

He said the delay was requested by “Vice Premier of China, Liu He, and due to the fact that the People’s Republic of China will be celebrating their 70th Anniversary.”

Beijing is planning a large-scale military parade on October 1, National Day, to mark the anniversary.

The announcement came after Beijing said earlier in the day that it would spare some US products from punitive new tariffs, an apparent conciliatory move ahead of high-level talks next month aiming to resolve the two nations’ protracted trade war.

However, the goods do not include big-ticket agricultural items that could be crucial to the ultimate success of any agreement between the two sides, whose stand-off is dragging on the global economy.

The Chinese exemptions will become effective on September 17 and will be valid for a year, according to the Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council, which released two lists that include seafood products and anti-cancer drugs.

Trade negotiators have said they will meet in Washington in early October, raising hopes for an easing of tensions between the world’s two biggest economies. (AFP)