December 16, 2019
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
Federal Issues

U.S. and China announce "Phase One" trade agreement

On Friday the United States announced it had reached a "phase one" trade deal with China. The U. S. removed the threat of new tariffs and China agreed to purchase farm goods and some other products. Both sides said negotiations would continue on other remaining issues.

The limited deal means that some new tariffs which had been scheduled to go into effect yesterday will be postponed. Some other earlier tariffs will be reduced.

"This doesn't solve all of our problems," said Clete Willems, a former Trump administration economic official and current partner at law firm Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld LLP. "But it is very important for the U.S. and China to be able to say 'yes' to each other on some things."

The Wall Street Journal and Politico have more on the meaning and impact of the phase one deal.

Contact Amy Anderson, AWB government affairs director for federal issues, to learn more.

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Spreading Christmas Joy
Holiday Kids Tree

Sharing the Spirit of the Season Across Our State

By AWB President Kris Johnson

As the state's business and manufacturing association, AWB is proud to lead a number of statewide efforts. Perhaps the most heartwarming is our job each December to coordinate the decorations and lighting of the state's holiday tree. Those decorations are always bundled up after the new year and donated to a local children's hospital.

Washington employers have donated a total of $438,000 to the Holiday Kids' Tree project over the last three decades. Just before the annual tree-lighting ceremony, we give bags of toys and checks to representatives from rural fire districts who distribute the food and toys to families in need. This year we were able to spread holiday cheer to families across the state, from Camano Island to Chelan and Walla Walla.

And speaking of trees, your state Capitol this year was filled with the greenery of a 34-foot noble fir, donated by Weyerhaeuser from its Vail Tree Farm near Rainier.

The tree was harvested from a small area that is being cleared to make room for a series of wind turbines at the new Skookumchuck Wind Farm. This 38-turbine project, a partnership between Puget Sound Energy, Weyerhaeuser, TransAlta and RES, will generate 137 megawatts of power -- enough to power 48,000 homes. That will be a gift for generations to come...

Read the full guest column in The (Centralia) Chronicle