OSAKA (Reuters) – US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet in Japan on Saturday to rescue trade talks or plunge the two largest economies in the world into deeper trade wars.
FILE PHOTO: US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet on November 9, 2017 in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China. REUTERS / Damir Sagolj
The dispute has already cost companies in both countries billions of dollars, troubled global production and supply lines, and confused global markets.
Trump said he would sit down with Xi, the first meeting between the two leaders for seven months, around noon on Saturday (0300 GMT) in Osaka, where they discussed a dispute over Huawei Technologies Co [HWT.UL] and the trade would discuss topics including topics.
Trump said the two saw each other on Friday evening at a group dinner of 20 leaders. "Last night, a lot was actually achieved," he said.
"The relationship with China is very good. Whether we can make a deal or not, time will tell. But the relationship itself is really great. "
However, the US president has announced that tariffs on almost all imports from China to the United States to expand, if the meeting would not bring any progress in terms of far-reaching US demands for economic reforms.
China's Global Times, a well-read newspaper published by the official People's Daily of the ruling Communist Party, said on Saturday that the world needed to suppress "capricious US actions," citing examples such as Trump's resigning from the Paris Climate Agreement ,
"The world has to tame the US, even if it's difficult," it said in an editorial. "The problem is that many countries have concerns about expressing their opposition to US bullying tactics for fear of US power, or hoping to benefit from the US, which is shaking up the global order with opportunism." The global economic slowdown has overshadowed the two-day G20 summit.
The heads of state and government of major economies will agree on Saturday to press ahead with World Trade Organization reforms, but without calling in their final message the need to oppose protectionism, the Japanese newspaper Nikkei said.
The best outcome of the Trump Xi talks would be a resumption of trade negotiations, US Vice President Mike Pence Chief of Staff Marc Short said to White House reporters Friday.
The US states that China has been stealing US intellectual property for years, forcing US corporations to disclose trade secrets and subsidizing state-owned companies to dominate both domestic and international business.
China says the United States is making inappropriate demands and must also make concessions.
"We believe the US side is putting extreme pressure," said a Chinese diplomat Reuters on Friday on condition of anonymity. "It raises many demands, but does not want to make any concessions."
The dispute escalated as the talks collapsed in May after Washington accused Beijing of renouncing reform promises. Trump raised tariffs to 25% from 10% to 200 billion US dollars in Chinese goods, and China returned tuition on US imports.
As relations between the two countries worsened, the dispute spread beyond trade. The US government has identified Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei as a security threat and effectively prevented US companies from doing business with it.
US. Officials have also put pressure on other governments around the world to divert Huawei from plans to develop a 5G network.
Trump has proposed easing US restrictions on Huawei, which could be a factor in a deal with Xi.
China called on the US to lift restrictions and said that Huawei poses no security threat. [GG20] Several G20 leaders warned on the first day of the summit on Friday that growing trade disputes between the United States and the United States China would threaten global growth.
"Trade relations between China and the United States are difficult and contribute to slowing the global economy," said European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at a press conference.
Reporting by Roberta Rampton in Osaka; Additional coverage by Koh Gui Qing in New York, Ben Blanchard in Beijing and Leika Kihara in Osaka; Writing by Simon Webb; Edited by Rosalba O'Brien and William Mallard