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Xi, Trump discuss trade in phone call

By ZHAO HUANXIN in Washington / ZHANG YUNBI | China Daily USA / China Daily | Updated: 2018-11-01 23:55

Related: President Xi talks with Trump

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Donald Trump have agreed to meet again at the upcoming G20 summit in Argentina and directed their economic teams to ramp up contact and consultation.

In a phone call at the invitation of Trump on Thursday, Xi said he hopes China and the United States will be able to promote a steady and healthy relationship in accordance with the important consensuses reached between him and Trump.

“Both of us have good wishes for the healthy and stable development of Sino-US relations and the expansion of the economic and trade cooperation. We must work hard to turn the visions into reality,” Xi said, according to a news release by the Chinese side.

Trump said that it is very important for the heads of state of the United States and China to keep frequent, direct communication, and that he and Xi should keep in touch with each other.

The US president also said he attaches importance to a good relationship with Xi and is willing to extend, through Xi, his good wishes to the Chinese people.

Trump said he looks forward to meeting Xi at the upcoming G20 summit and having an in-depth discussion on some major issues.

He said he hopes the two countries will make joint efforts to prepare for the meeting, adding that the United States attaches importance to US-China economic and trade cooperation and would like to continue to expand exports to China.

He also said that the economic teams from the two sides need to enhance exchanges and consultations.

Trump said he supports American companies to participate in the first China International Import Expo, which is scheduled for Nov 5-10 in Shanghai.

Xi said the essence of the China-US cooperation on economy and trade is mutual benefits and win-win results.

He said he was pleased that a host of US companies are actively participating in the expo, an event which demonstrates China’s willingness to increase imports and expand opening-up.

Xi also said that in the past the two countries have had “successful precedents” for resolving their trade differences through coordination and cooperation.

The economic teams of the two countries should strengthen contacts, and conduct consultations on issues of mutual concern, and push for a “mutually acceptable solution” for China-US economic and trade issues, said the Chinese president.

The two sides also exchanged views on the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

Xi said that since the beginning of this year, the Korean Peninsula situation has undergone positive changes.

China appreciates the historic meeting between Trump and top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea Kim Jong-un, which promotes denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the political settlement of the Korean Peninsula issue, according to a Xinhua News Agency report.

China hopes that the US and the DPRK take care of each other's concerns and further advance the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in parallel with the building of a peace mechanism on the peninsula, Xi said, adding that China will continue to play a constructive role.

Trump said that since the beginning of this year, talks between the United States and the DPRK have made positive progress.

The US side attaches great importance to China’s important role in the Korean Peninsula issue. It is willing to continue to strengthen communication and coordination with China, Trump said, according to the Xinhua report.

The world’s top two economies are locked in an escalating trade conflict, with billions of dollars of tariffs already slapped on each other’s goods.

The G20 leaders meeting is scheduled at the end of November in Buenos Aires. The Xi-Trump meeting in Argentina would be their first encounter in a year following a historic summit in Beijing last November.

“This G-20 meeting is the only multilateral setting on the agenda for months where the two leaders can meet,” said Douglas H. Paal, vice-president of the Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

“Trump will skip the APEC leaders forum and East Asian Summit, so it is an opportunity to address many issues where only the top leaders are considered authoritative,” Paal told China Daily.

Cui Tiankai, Beijing’s top envoy to Washington, who was present at the meetings between the two presidents at Mar-a-Lago in Florida in April 2017 and in Beijing, said it was clear that such top-level communication plays the “key role”, “irreplaceable role” in guiding the relationship forward.

“And there's a good mutual understanding and good working relationship between the two, I hope and I’m sure this will continue,” Cui said in an interview with Fox News, which aired on Oct 14.

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