China lifted a ban on imports of US agricultural products in a move diplomatic sources said would set the seal on better Chinese-US relations. But the sources said there was a growing possibility that the lifting of the ban may have come too late to let China fulfill its obligations under a grain agreement with Washington. By year's end, China must buy more than 3 million tons of grain.
In January, Peking slapped an embargo on US cotton, soybean, and chemical fibers and planned to reduce purchases of other US agricultural goods in response to a decision by Washington to halt Chinese textile imports. Wednesday's reversal followed the signing of a new US-Chinese textile agreement in Geneva last month.