Sunday, 19 November, 2017

China's trade surplus with United States eases as Trump visits

Beijing may be calm before the Trump trade storm Trade deficits with China may be 'horrible,' but there are no quick fixes
Howard Terry | 09 November, 2017, 01:07

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan personally escorted Mr. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump during the visit to the Forbidden City - a world heritage site with a pristine halo of imperial China.

As Trump toured the Forbidden City, his commerce secretary Wilbur Ross joined his Chinese counterpart Wang Yang in Beijing's Great Hall of the People to oversee the signing of $9 billion of deals for everything from Montana beef to water purification equipment.

President Trump is visiting five nations across Asia this month in a 13-day trip that includes stops in Japan, South, Korea, and China.

Foreigners are generally still able to tweet via their cellphones, and Trump is expected to continue his daily dose of high-octane missives over the three-day state visit, but it's what he might chose not to say that could send a more subtle but equally important message.

Personal relationships have helped define relations between the US and China, beginning with Mao Zedong welcoming Richard Nixon to Beijing.

China has always advocated denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, said Zheng, and that the issue should be solved at the negotiating table.

After carefully listening to Obama, the person said, Xi replied that he wouldn't throw the first punch at Trump - but he also wouldn't sit back and take one.

The official said China, Pyongyang's main trading partner, has been exerting its influence but could do more. "China economic relationship", the official told reporters on Air Force One as it flew to Beijing.

On Wednesday, Trump mischaracterised the nature of Xi's success at the Communist Party Congress, writing on Twitter that he was looking forward "to meeting with President Xi who is just off his great political victory".

With lavish pageantry and an uncharacteristic personal flourish, Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday rolled out a red carpet welcome for US President Donald Trump at the Forbidden City, the ancient home of China's emperors.

The Trump administration has responded by framing his 11-day, five-nation Asia trip as a broadening of United States policy in the "Indo-Pacific" region. "We hope all parties do things that are conducive to better relations, trust and mutual understanding".

White House officials have said that if Trump were to chide Xi about human rights or democratic reforms he would likely do it privately.

"I think we can say that so far, our measures have been relatively successful", comments Wu Xinbo with the Center for American Studies at Fudan University in Shanghai. US exports to China rose 77 per cent from 2007 to 2016 but Washington reported a $347 billion trade deficit with China previous year.

The country has banned Facebook, the world's most popular social media platform, since 2009.

TRUMP WATCH: Trump warned North Korea not to "try us" in a speech to South Korea's National Assembly.

"Consolidating state power over the Internet is a top priority for Xi - both economically and for state security", said Ian Bremmer, president of Eurasia Group, a global risk assessment firm.

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