Mid-level trade negotiations between US and China continue in Beijing today. That’s supposed to lead up to high level meeting between USTR Robert Lighthizer, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He on Thursday and Friday. So far, little news is reported regarding the actual talks. It’s believed that the teams are only in the stage of drafting a common document that addresses the issues. But they’re still struggling to find concrete ways on the main issue, enforcement of the agreement.
White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said yesterday that Trump “wants to meet with President Xi very soon.” She added that This president wants a deal. He wants it to be fair to Americans and American workers and American interests.” Also, Trump has “forged a mutually respectful relationship with President Xi,” and “they will meet again soon.” However, Conway also noted that no deal will be final until the Trump-Xi meeting happens.
As the March 1 trade truce deadline is approaching, time is running out for the talks. It’s reported that an option for the US is to extend the period. However, to maintain pressure on China and urgency on the negotiations, any extensions won’t be open-ended. And based on unnamed sources, the US side intend not to let the Trump-Xi meeting slip much past end of March.