Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) holds a grand ceremony to greet US President Donald Trump on November 9, 2017 in front of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China.
Lan Hongguang | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images
President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he and Chinese President Xi Jinping will hold "an expanded meeting at the G-20 in Japan next week."
In a tweet, Trump said that he and Xi had "We had a very good phone conversation," and that "our respective teams will begin discussions before we meet."
China had been wondering if Xi was a personal phone Meeting with the US president at the summit would be scheduled for June 28-29 in Osaka, while the two economic superpowers remain involved in a heated commercial dispute.
Trump said he had expected the meeting to take place at the high-profile summit, but had recently downplayed the implications of forging a deal with Beijing. Trump told Fox News "Fox & Friends" last week that "it does not matter" whether Xi visits the G-20 or not.
"If he turns up, fine, if he does not ̵
The Chinese Embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment on Trump's tweet.
Trump and China have imposed punitive tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of imports of each other's goods. In May, Trump raised tariffs on $ 200 billion of Chinese imports and threatened to raise tariffs to another $ 300 billion after negotiations came to a standstill this month.
Trump told CNBC last week that if Xi did not attend the G-20 summit, he would immediately introduce the additional $ 300 billion.
Current and former representatives of the Trump administration and trade advisers have warned that a potential meeting with Xi is unlikely to lead to a separate trade agreement, but could help pave the way to a deal.
Trump's tweet came just before the US Trade Representative was due to testify to the Senate Finance Committee on the president's trade agenda for 2019. Lighthizer was expected to focus primarily on the trilateral trade agreement to replace NAFTA, the so-called US Mexico Canada Agreement, or USMCA, which was agreed by the three Confederate nations but has not yet reached Congress.
However, it is likely that questions on the next steps of the Trump government are emerging in negotiations with China, where Democrats and some Republicans have sharply criticized the President's use of tariffs.
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– CNBC's Tucker Higgins contributed to this report.