White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said Wednesday that USA trade talks with China are continuing to progress as negotiations between the world's two biggest economies resume in Washington this week.
China's Vice Premier Liu He met with US trade representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on 3 April to begin three-days of negotiations that are aimed at ending the ongoing trade war between Washington and Beijing.
The two sides, he said, have negotiated some of the toughest points, but there are still some ways to go.
But, the US and European Union have since publicly disagreed on whether agricultural trade barriers would be part of the trade equation.
The US has already imposed tariffs on $250bn worth of Chinese goods, and China has retaliated with duties on $110bn of US products. A meeting date between Trump and Xi could be announced as early as Thursday, people familiar with the plans said.
As far as we can tell, no one else has called Xi Jinping "king".
Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and USA officials resumed talks on Friday in Washington, said White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow.
The issue has been a source of tension between the two countries for years.
Asked about the benefits of an agreement for China, Mr Trump said: "It's going to be great for China, in that China will continue to trade with the United States".
Mr. Liu said Mr. Xi believes that "strategic leadership" was needed for the "healthy, stable development of China-US ties". "Progress is being made at a very rapid pace". In retaliation, China has targeted $110bn in American imports. The White House referred questions to USTR, which didn't immediately reply to a request for comment.
For his role, Vice Premier Liu He, at the White House, stated he "agreed" and that doing this will be a really "good strategy", according to the English news organization Reuters.
Trump also flagged that if issues were not resolved, it would be hard to let China keep trading with the US.
Michael Pillsbury, a China expert at the Hudson Institute, said the emerging accord would not erase all of the irritants in the US-China relationship.
He said there were still some major issues left in trade talks, according to media reports.
Trump, during his meeting with Liu, floated the idea of following up on a potential trade deal with China with a second phase deal that addressed the issue of military spending and arms production. An increase in tariffs by 25 percentage points on all goods traded between the USA and China would reduce annual output in the U.S.by up to 0.6 percent, and up to 1.5 percent in China, she said.
It remains unclear whether the US will cancel some or all of the tariffs the president imposed a year ago on more than $250 billion worth of Chinese imports.
He also vowed to eliminate the United States' chronic trade deficit with China, yet saw it climb to a record US$419.2b in 2018.
-With assistance from Jennifer Jacobs, Saleha Mohsin, Jeffrey Black and Yinan Zhao.