US-China trade talks have ‘already begun’: Trump
WASHINGTON : President Donald Trump said on Monday that talks on a trade deal with Beijing have resumed following a weekend truce struck with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G-20 summit.
Mr Trump and Mr Xi agreed on Saturday to hold off on new tariff increases as the world's top two economies negotiate a final agreement to resolve their year-long trade war.
"It's already begun," Mr Trump told reporters at the White House, when asked if trade negotiations had restarted.
"They are speaking very much on the phone but they are also meeting."
But he suggested the deal should be "tilted" towards the United States.
"It has to be better for us than for them because they had such a big advantage for so many years," he added, referring to China's soaring US trade surplus, which Mr Trump views as a loss for the US.
"Obviously, we can't make a 50-50 deal. It has to be a deal that is somewhat tilted to our advantage."
At the weekend, Mr Trump also offered to relax some restrictions on US technology exports to China's telecoms giant Huawei, which US officials describe as a tool of Chinese espionage.
But the Republican leader said any final resolution of the matter would have to come when both sides strike a final bargain.
SIGH OF RELIEF
The apparent thaw in US-China trade relations drew a collective sigh of relief from global markets, which staged a relief rally on Monday even though major questions about any deal remain unanswered.
Mr Trump in May jacked up tariffs on more than US$200 billion (S$271 billion) in Chinese imports after accusing Beijing of suddenly reneging on commitments made during extensive negotiations which started last year.
Washington has accused Beijing of massive state intervention in markets as well as the forced transfer and outright theft of American technological know-how.
But analysts say China is unlikely to accede to US demands, which could undermine the Communist Party's hold on power. - AFP
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