News Article

Negotiators hold trade talks ahead of Trump-Xi meeting

Chinese and US trade negotiators conducted telephone discussions ahead of a snap conference at this week’s G20 summit between leaders Xi Jinping and Donald Trump, government media in China said Tuesday (June 25).

Vice Premier Liu He, Xi’s trade war point man, spoke on Monday with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, “exchanging views on financial and trade problems,” according to the official Xinhua news organisation.

The call occurred “at the request of the U.S.,” and officials agreed to keep in touch, Xinhua said.

According to a US official, Trump’s highly anticipated meeting with Xi will be held on Saturday, the second day of the 20-summit group in Osaka, Japan.

After negotiations broke down last month, the two leaders agreed to meet, and both sides exchanged steep tariff increases on US$ 260 billion in two-way trade.

Since then, Trump has shifted to blacklist the most significant telecommunications business in China, Huawei. By attempting to produce their roster of “unreliable” companies and people, Beijing reacted.

Chinese authorities said the G20 would seek a united front against protectionism on Monday.

“Unilateralism and protectionism have harmed worldwide development… undermining worldwide quality systems and dampening market sentiment,” said Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Zhang Jun at a meeting to predict Xi’s participation at the meeting.

“China will collaborate with others in the G20 to strongly maintain multilateralism and an accessible worldwide trading system based on rules,” said Zhang.

Trump has initiated trade fights with a variety of nations and areas, from China to Japan, Mexico and the European Union, but criticism has been levelled at Beijing’s financial strategies.

The US and the EU have suspected Beijing of offering foreign firms in China with an absence of level playing field, enabling intellectual property theft and requiring global firms to turn over their trade secrets to local counterparts.

Chinese Deputy Trade Minister Wang Shouwen said on Monday that compromises should be made between Washington and Beijing.

Any China-US discussions must be focused on “shared regard, fairness and shared profit and compliance with WTO regulations,” Wang said.

He also encouraged the US to drop “improper and discriminatory” obstacles against Chinese firms, stating such movements are jeopardising the privileges of both Chinese and US firms-an oblique link to Huawei’s US therapy.

American representatives convicted their Chinese colleagues of backsliding on obligations produced in the talks, but Lighthizer said last week that he was optimistic that the negotiations might remain productive.

“I conjecture that some Chinese forces knew they’d moved too far, going beyond their command,” he said. “In the individuals, I’m working with; I have confidence and total excellent belief… I believe that we can get home on track.”

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