China’s Xi ‘Can’t Believe What Trump Says’ Regarding Trade War
Chinese President Xi Jinping voiced distrust and displeasure to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe regarding U.S. President Donald Trump and the ongoing trade war with the United States, according to a report by Kyodo News.
“I can’t believe what President Trump says” concerning trade negotiations, Xi was quoted as telling Abe during a meeting on the fringe of the Group of 20 summit in Osaka.
Abe reportedly told Xi that Trump trusts the Chinese president, but Xi continued to voice frustration and the big reason for his distrust is how the U.S. has handled Chinese telecom giant Huawei, which has been banned from U.S. networks and from buying American tech. Trump originally agreed to a Xi proposal over the phone to deal with Huawei during the next working-level negotiations, but that never panned out.
“Once the negotiations began, the U.S. side said that Huawei is not a trade issue but a security issue and did not deal with it,” Xi told Abe, noting that Trump’s words aren’t generally reliable in his mind.
Xi also had a telephone conference with Trump on June 18, according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, and Xi said he hoped that “the U.S. side can treat Chinese firms in a fair manner.”
Xi reportedly went on to complain to Abe about how the Trump administration has continued to lambaste China at every turn for supporting state-owned companies with subsidies while “the U.S. is also supporting Boeing with subsidies,” in reference to the Chicago-based plane builder.
Just last week, another round of tariffs on Chinese imports went into effect, placing duties on nearly all goods imported into the U.S., with another round coming on Dec. 15 so as not to put a damper on consumer spending over the holidays.
China retaliated with duties of its own on $75 billion worth of U.S. imports, prompting Trump to retaliate yet again by upping his tariffs 5% across the board. Trump reportedly wanted to double the tariffs but his aides talked him out of going that far.
Talks between the two sides are scheduled for October but there is skepticism about any sort of breakthrough, and China is rumored to be ready to wait until Trump is out of office before working with the next administration.