White House: President Trump wants to meet with Pres. Xi Jinping soon

Kenny Grant
February 14, 2019

U.S. and Chinese trade negotiators are meeting this week for talks U.S. President Donald Trump says will help decide whether he escalates a technology dispute by going ahead with a March 2 tariff hike on US$200 billion of imports from China.

The high-stakes dispute has raised concerns it could spill over into the global economy after Trump past year hit China with 25 percent punitive tariffs on $50 billion in goods, and then imposed 10 percent duties on another $200 billion in annual imports.

Lighthizer, who arrived at the hotel earlier in the day, did not answer reporters' questions.

"But at some point, I expect to meet with President Xi.and make the parts of the deal that the group is unable to make", he said, in reference to senior USA and Chinese officials in charge of trade negotiations.

Businesspeople and economists say the two days of talks are unlikely to resolve the battle that threatens to drag on weakening global economic growth.

Negotiators from the world's two largest economies began their latest round of talks this week ahead of the March 1 deadline for additional USA tariffs on Chinese goods.

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"But at some point I expect to meet with President Xi", Trump noted, "and make the parts of the deal that the group is unable to make happen". The truce is set to end on 1 March.

A March 1 deadline is looming for China and the USA to strike an accord before Washington hikes tariffs on Chinese goods to 25%. While the American side has expressed optimism, officials caution that there are still many large issues between the USA and China.

Cmdr. Clay Doss, U.S. Seventh Fleet public affairs officer, told Fox News in a statement: "Guided-missile destroyers USS Spruance (DDG 111) and USS Preble (DDG 88) conducted freedom of navigation operations (FONOPS) in the South China Sea".

Even if the two sides could come to terms on tariffs, that might not mean an end to trade friction, Green added. China never gave us 10 cents.

China then accused the U.S. of trespassing, and Chinese media announced it had deployed a "far-reaching anti-ship ballistic missile", the DF-26, that was "capable of targeting medium and large ships".

The US and its Western allies believe Huawei's apparatus could be used for espionage, and see its expansion into central Europe as a way to gain a foothold in the European Union market. In September, a Chinese warship came within just 45 yards of a US destroyer, raising concerns about the possibility of tensions boiling over into conflict.

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