Donald Trump attends a bilateral meeting with Xi Jinping during the G20 leaders summit in Osaka, Japan, on Saturday. Kevin Lamarque/ Reuters
Washington is open to a “historic” trade deal with China, President Donald Trump said on Saturday as he met President Xi Jinping, who called for “cooperation and dialogue.”
“It would be historic if we could do a fair trade deal,” Trump said at the start of the high-stakes meeting to thrash out a tariff war between the world’s top two economies.
“We are totally open to it,” added Trump.
Xi opened the meeting by telling his US counterpart that “cooperation and dialogue” are better than “confrontation.”
The bilateral talks are the most highly anticipated event of the two-day G20 summit in the Japanese city of Osaka, even though experts see little chance of a full deal to end the damaging trade war between the two countries.
The best that most experts expect is a truce, which would avoid the imposition of further tariffs, and open the way for additional discussions and an eventual deal.
“We want to do some things that will even it up with respect to trade,” Trump said.
“We were very close but something happened where it slipped up a little bit,” he added, in reference to the breakdown of previous negotiations.
He also heaped praise on Xi and China.
“We have had a lot of time together, we’ve become friends,” Trump said, ignoring questions from reporters about what their talks would cover.
“Chinese culture, it’s an incredible culture,” he said.
President Donald Trump on Thursday for the first time linked a dispute over telecom giant Huawei, which he views as a threat to American security, with a deal to resolve the US-China trade war.
With under three weeks to go before proposed talks between the Chinese and US leaders, expectations for progress toward ending the trade war are low and sources say there has been
Top US and Chinese trade officials met in Shanghai on Wednesday for talks in a bid to end a year-long trade war, despite low expectations for progress and combative remarks
Xi "pushed for the US to show flexibility and meet the DPRK (North Korea) halfway, including the timely easing of sanctions against the DPRK and finding a solution to each other's concerns through dialogue," Wang Yi told reporters.
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