Most or all US tariffs on China are likely to be lifted as part of a trade deal between the world’s two largest economies now in its final stages, said two people familiar with the discussions.

Beijing made clear in a series of recent negotiations with the US that removing the tariffs on US$200 billion of Chinese goods from day one was necessary to finalize any deal, said the people, who were not authorized to talk publicly about the deliberations.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier that the US and China were close to finalizing a trade pact.

China is offering to lower tariffs on US farm, chemical, auto and other products, the newspaper said, citing people familiar. Washington is considering removing most sanctions levied against Chinese products since last year, the WSJ reported, citing unnamed sources.

Political hurdles remain, according to the people briefed on the matter.

As part of a deal, China is pledging to speed up the timetable for removing foreign-ownership limitations on car ventures and to reduce tariffs on imported vehicles to below the current auto tariff of 15 percent.