The United States and China have signed their so-called "phase one" trade deal, finally ending a trade spat that lasted for 18 consecutive months and shook up the world economy. China agreed to buy more American products, while the U.S. is set to lower tariffs on Chinese products. Today we go in-depth to see how their trade deal will impact not only the Korean economy, but world markets as well. For that, Professor Yang Jun-sok from the Catholic University of Korea joins me in the studio. It's always a big pleasure to have you, professor.
Let's first look into the specifics of this "phase one" trade deal. China decided to boost U.S. imports by 200 billion dollars. And the U.S. agreed to postpone additional tariffs on Chinese goods and lower previous ones down to half. What other important points in the U.S.-China trade deal should we pay attention to?
The Trump administration has self-assessed that the phase one deal is a big win for the U.S., while China has stressed that it's a fair, equivalent deal. How do you see the trade deal?
Now, the global economy has been quick to respond to the inking of this deal. New York's top three indexes hit record highs, while Korea's benchmark KOSPI rose to its highest level in 9 months. What does this trade deal mean for Korea's and the world's economy?
Some point out that China boosting U.S. imports by 200 billion dollars won't be easy to achieve. Do you think this phase-one deal can be carried out smoothly?
Factors relating to the "phase-two" deal are some sensitive in nature China's provision of subsidies to manufacturers and sanctions on Huawei. Do you think Washington and Beijing could clash again before they move on to their next deal? How do you see their phase-two negotiations unfolding?
The Bank of Korea held its first monetary policy board meeting of the New Year today. It froze its benchmark interest rate at 1.25 percent for January. Last year, Korea lowered its interest rates two times, but there was no additional fall. How should we see this?
Eyes are on whether the central bank will lower its benchmark interest rate this year. What's your forecast?
The conflict between the U.S. and Iran posed raised concerns on how building tensions in the region would affect the Korean economy. The Iran crisis seems to have cooled down for now, but it is yet to be solved. How was the Korean economy affected by U.S.-Iran tensions? What do you expect to see in the coming months?