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StanChart says U.S.-China ties may improve in two years — but don’t expect Trump tactics to go away

Standard Chartered Bank is bullish on U.S.-China relations and expects ties between the two countries to improve in the next “12 to 24 months,” according to Eric Robertsen, chief strategist and global head of research at the bank.

Even as U.S. President Joe Biden and his team are focused on improving domestic growth, they recognize it is critical to create conditions for global trade to thrive, Robertsen said in an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Monday.

“I don’t think that means they will abandon some of the tactics that were used by the Trump administration,” he said.

“The Biden team has made it very clear that they think that the tariffs strategy was flawed. That being said, I don’t think they’re going to reverse it tomorrow either,” he noted, adding that “they will use it as part of  a broader negotiating strategy.”

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in an interview with CNBC last week: “For the moment, we’ve kept the tariffs in place that were, you know, put in place by the Trump administration.” However, she added that the Biden administration will evaluate how to proceed going forward.

The White House also said last month it would review all national security measures put in place by the Trump administration, including the U.S.-China Phase 1 trade deal.

Trump signed the initial trade agreement with Chinese President Xi Jinping in January 2020, pausing a nearly 18-month trade war in which U.S. and Chinese goods worth hundreds of billions of dollars were hit by retaliatory tariffs.

Areas for U.S-China cooperation


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