Attention is turning to a possible meeting of President Donald Trump with Chinese leader Xi Jinping at a summit in Japan later this month as the next step in the vexing trade standoff between the two biggest economies.
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Asked during a telephone interview with "Squawk Box" if the new tariffs will go into effect immediately if Xi doesn't attend, Trump said "Yes, it would". Now we're getting a lot of money from China.
Last month, the USA accused China of reneging on provisions of a tentative trade deal, bringing talks to a halt. Mr. Trump noted that China's president, by contrast, is essentially also head of the Chinese central bank. "And that will be taxed", Trump said.
By contrast, he said, China President Xi Jinping's effective control over the country's monetary policy gives it an advantage. It also wants curbs on subsidies for Chinese state-owned enterprises and better access for USA firms in Chinese markets.
Vietnam had emerged as one of the top beneficiaries past year of the Sino-U.S. trade dispute because tariff-weary shippers based in China were tapping the country as an alternative, low-tariff place to manufacture exports headed to the United States.
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Trump wanted China to commit to cutting its trade surplus with the U.S. and to forsake industrial policies aimed at helping the country's firms gain an advantage over foreign rivals in key technologies, including in fields such as robotics and artificial intelligence.
"We note that for some time, the USA has made multiple public statements that it look forward to a meeting between the two heads of state during the G20 Osaka Summit", Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters in Beijing when asked about the issue. "I think they really have to make a deal". The president also said China wants to come to a trade agreement with the U.S.
"We thought we had a deal, and unfortunately they decided that they were going to change the deal, and they can't do that with me".
The United States is seeking sweeping changes, including an end to forced technology transfers and theft of U.S. trade secrets.
A source with ties to China's leadership said there was deep anger in the government and party about Trump's accusations of China backsliding, especially as Beijing thought it was on the verge of a deal. Those collapsed last month after Trump accused China of reneging on parts of the agreement, leading to an increase in tariffs and stronger actions against Huawei.
That was despite the United States warning it could still impose tariffs in the future if Mexico failed to satisfy its border control demands.
A senior Chinese official previously told US businessmen visiting China preparations had yet to begin for either a Xi-Trump meeting or to resume trade negotiations.