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When Steven Mnuchin and Robert Lighthizer meet with their Chinese counterparts in Shanghai this week, few observers expect that a breakthrough will be reach. That includes President Trump, who chided the Chinese in a tweet Tuesday morning to cut a deal before the 2020 election - or risk facing a second-term president with a strengthened popular mandate.
But in what appears to be an effort to distract from the lingering tensions over China's promised purchases of American farm products, or Trump's promise to remove Huawei from the Commerce Department's blacklist - neither of which have been kept - Bloomberg reports that the Chinese negotiators are pulling out all of the stops: They will be hosting their American counterparts at the Fairmont Peace Hotel Tuesday evening after the delegation arrives at another hotel on the Bund waterfront shortly after 1:30 pm.
Building - Cathay - Hotel - Bloomberg - Buildings
The 1920s art-deco building, which used to be known as the Cathay Hotel, was described by Bloomberg as "one of the most celebrated buildings on the Shanghai riverside" and has hosted famous guests including Charlie Chaplin and Noel Coward. The hotel was briefly used as an administrative building during the early years of the People's Republic.
Negotiations are slated to begin on Wednesday at the Xijiao State Guest Hotel - the leafy compound of luxury reception buildings and accommodations in the west of the city. Neither the US government nor the Chinese would comment when approached by Bloomberg.
Per - BBG - Peace - Hotel - Setting
Per BBG, the Peace Hotel’s setting in the former International Settlement is freighted with the complicated history of America’s relationship with Chinese.
That could be a message and a reminder that Beijing has no intention of bending to President Trump's rhetoric.
Passage - Lobby - Walls - Hotel - Past
On the east passage from the lobby, the walls show off the hotel’s glamorous past. There’s Chaplin posing on the famous staircase in 1936, and scenes from...
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