Trump says ‘big progress’ on possible China trade deal

Yeganeh Torbati, Ryan Woo December 30, 2018

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Twitter that he had a “long and very good call” with Chinese President Xi Jinping and that a possible trade deal between the United States and China was progressing well.

As a partial shutdown of the U.S. government entered its eighth day, with no quick end in sight, the Republican president was in Washington, sending out tweets attacking Democrats and talking up possibly improved relations with China.

The two nations have been in a trade war for much of 2018, shaking world financial markets as the flow of hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods between the world’s two largest economies has been disrupted by tariffs.

Trump and Xi agreed to a ceasefire in the trade war, deciding to hold off on imposing more tariffs for 90 days starting Dec. 1 while they negotiate a deal to end the dispute following months of escalating tensions.

“Just had a long and very good call with President Xi of China,” Trump wrote on Saturday. “Deal is moving along very well. If made, it will be very comprehensive, covering all subjects, areas and points of dispute. Big progress being made!”

Chinese state media also said Xi and Trump spoke on Saturday, and quoted Xi as saying that teams from both countries have been working to implement a consensus reached with Trump.

“I hope that the two teams will meet each other half way, work hard, and strive to reach an agreement that is mutually beneficial and beneficial to the world as soon as possible,” Xi said, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency.

China’s foreign ministry said on Sunday the two countries’ relationship had endured storms before, but that strong ties were important for the economies of both nations and for ensuring global stability and peace.

Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said that Sino-U.S. ties now “stand at a historic new starting point” and that the two sides should respect each other’s sovereignty, security and development interest and appropriately manage differences.

“Both sides should stick to rationally and objectively viewing the other side’s strategic intentions, strengthen strategic communication and promote strategic mutual trust to prevent strategic misjudgments,” he said in a statement.

Excerpts by Chan Kai Yee of Reuters’ report “Trump says ‘big progress’ on possible China trade deal” with the part on government shutdown omitted as it is irrelevant.

Note: This is excerpts of Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the article’s views.

6 Comments on “Trump says ‘big progress’ on possible China trade deal”

  1. Simon says:

    The best way to deal with Donald Trump is to kick him while he is down.


  2. Steve says:

    When the trade war deal is over and dusted, China will continue making more billions than the US. In a way, this is similar to a bilateral trade deal, except that China is more resourceful, smarter and will dominate the US import market. Americans consume, China exports. American wheat and meat farmers are having a tough time with the new TPP initiatives. The US farmers will lose big time against the 11 TPP countries including Japan, Australia, Mexico, Canada, etc.
    According to spokesman Lu Kang, this trade deal has references to the SCS, when he mentioned sovereignty, security and development interest.


    • Simon says:

      More likely the American is losing the ability to patrol the SCS now China has new radar, advance surface to air missiles, stealth fighters, better warships and submarines and may be now willing to ram American warships intruding its territorial waters. Trump is trying to put a spin on it by implying that as part of the trade deal America may be staying out of SCS but the real reason is they can no longer go there they way they had before.


      • Steve says:

        Maybe but its even better if President Duterte formally obliterate the PCA award. Then Aquino/US and other scoundrels look complete idiots.


        • Simon says:

          Nobody mentions the PCA award because nobody takes them seriousely. If countries still flout UNCLOS what chance does this none UN agency have? It is in the interest of the UN for countries not to recognise entities such as the PCA. Privately the Phillipines wish it never brought the case and the PCA wish it never took up the case but have no choice because of pressure from Washingtion.
          Since China ignored the PCA ruling the latter’s credibility to arbitrate took a serious hit. ASEAN followed China in not recognising it and America hardly ever mention it by name because they could not support its enforcement militarily so could not give the PCA credibility otherwise America will lose face.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Simon says:

    “Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said that Sino-U.S. ties now “stand at a historic new starting point” and that the two sides should respect each other’s sovereignty, security and development interest and appropriately manage differences”

    The thing is China always respected America’s soveriegnty, security and development interest. It is America that wanted to deprive China in any of those. Also I disagree with what Xi says about meeting Trump’s demand half way. Any demand initiated by Trump is unreasonable and broke WTO rules. A beggar cant demand how much they want and expect to get half the amount he asked. China should be dealing with Trump from a position of strength. America’s stock is falling because of the trade war. Trump has domestic problems, losing control of Congress, government shutdown and lost control of the Middle East. Trump is a lame duck president and should be consider lucky to get even a phone call from Xi let alone any concession to his demand.