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Trump hopes trade deal with China is ‘close’ and hints at summit with Xi

Trump hopes trade deal with China is ‘close’ and hints at summit with Xi
A trade deal with China could be reached in four weeks, US President Donald Trump said after meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He. If successful, Trump said he would invite Chinese President Xi Jinping to Washington.

Speaking at a meeting with Liu in Washington, DC on Thursday, Trump said the sticking points between Washington and Beijing included tariffs and intellectual property theft, but sounded optimistic a deal could be reached within a month.

Many of the most difficult issues have been resolved, but there were still “some ways to go,” Trump said, adding that if a deal is reached he would invite Xi to Washington for a summit.

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While Liu said the negotiations have made “great progress,” US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer noted there were “some major issues” still left to resolve.

As part of his strategy to renegotiate trade with China, Trump has imposed tariffs on over $250 billion in Chinese imports. Beijing has retaliated with levies on $110 billion in US goods. The latest round of US tariffs on $267 billion-worth of goods from China, scheduled for March 1, was postponed to allow for the talks, however.

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Washington has repeatedly accused Beijing of stealing US trade secrets, forcing foreign companies to hand over technology as the price of access to the Chinese market, and subsidizing its own tech companies at US expense. China has denied all the accusations, calling US tariffs protectionist.

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