Trump hopeful of reaching trade deal with China

Trump hopeful of reaching trade deal with China

"I think we will reach agreement with China and I think it will be a fair deal for all", said the US President.

Asian markets then added to their gains after Bloomberg News reported that Trump has asked United States cabinet officials to draft a possible trade deal with China ahead of a planned meeting with Xi at the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires later this month.

The US and China's tit-for-tat tariffs on each other's goods have rumbled on for months as Trump pledges to help create more US manufacturing jobs.

Trump warned that if China doesn't "treat us fairly, we're not going to treat them fairly" in remarks at an event for American workers at the White House. "OK, there's no mass movement, there's no huge thing, we're not on the cusp of a deal".

The US levied tariffs of 10 percent on $200 billion of Chinese products in September, with the rate set to increase to 25 percent by the end of the year.

"I think we'll make a deal with China, and I think it will be a very fair deal for everybody", Trump said Friday at the White House before leaving for political rallies in West Virginia and Indiana.

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In their talks on Thursday night, Xi told Trump that the two sides had to come up with a proposal to settle the trade war, while Trump said the two men had a "long and very good conversation" on several issues, including trade and North Korea. It also fuelled speculation that Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He's trip to the USA, which had originally been scheduled for September but was cancelled due to the escalation of the trade dispute, might be back in the cards.

The pound dipped but held most of its gains after a report that British Prime Minister Theresa May had reached a post-Brexit deal with Brussels securing access to the European Union for Britain's key finance sector. In Beijing Trump's move was seen as an insult to Xi, who sent a personal emissary to Washington for the negotiations, and cemented a view that Trump's real goal is to thwart China's rise.

China has repeatedly questioned the US's sincerity in trade talks, wary of agreeing to something only to have Trump change his mind. Xi held the meeting amid signs that the world's second largest economy is losing steam as it faces a trade war with the United States, a massive debt buildup and a weakening currency.

Xi said he was "very happy" to talk to Trump again and attaches "great importance to good relations with the president", according to China's official Xinhua news agency.

Hours later, however, the US Justice Department accused another Chinese firm of unfair practices, part of an across-the-board pressure campaign by the Trump administration targeting China.

The Trump administration has imposed tariffs on $250bn of trade with China this year and has threatened to hit all imports from China, which were worth $505bn last year.

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