Trump's China trade deal was a flop -- and the country bought none of the additional exports it promised: economist
US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) held talks at the G20 summit in Germany (AFP Photo/SAUL LOEB)

Just before the novel coronavirus struck, former President Donald Trump was hyping a trade deal he was negotiating with the Chinese government that he said would have obligated China to buy billions worth of American exports.

But Chad P. Brown, an economist at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, has crunched some numbers and has found that Trump's China deal has been a massive bust.

"In the end, China bought only 57 percent of the US exports it had committed to purchase under the agreement, not even enough to reach its import levels from before the trade war," Brown writes. "Put differently, China bought none of the additional $200 billion of exports Trump's deal had promised."

Brown does give Trump credit for coming to some kind of deal with Xi, which he said halted what he described as a "spiraling" trade war between the United States and China.

But that's about where the success of the deal ends.

"President Trump's trade war and phase on agreement did little to change China's economic policymaking," he argues. "Beijing seems intent on becoming more state centered and less market oriented. With the December 31, 2021 deadline for the $200 billion of purchase commitments now past, US policymakers are seeking a different approach."

Read the full analysis here.