BEIJING: China and the United States will face a long road before they can reach a deal to end their bitter trade war, with more fights ahead likely, Chinese state media said after the two countries’ presidents held ice-breaking talks in Japan.
The world’s two largest economies are in the midst of a bitter trade war, which has seen them level increasingly severe tariffs on each other’s imports.
In a sign of significant progress in relations on Saturday, Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump, on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Osaka, agreed to a ceasefire and a return to talks.
However, the official China Daily, an English-language daily often used by Beijing to put its message out to the rest of the world, warned while there was now a greater likelihood of reaching an agreement, there’s no guarantee there would be one.
“Even though Washington agreed to postpone levying additional tariffs on Chinese goods to make way for negotiations, and Trump even hinted at putting off decisions on Huawei until the end of negotiations, things are still very much up in the air,” it said in an editorial.
“Agreement on 90% of the issues has proved not to be enough, and with the remaining 10% where their fundamental differences reside, it is not going to be easy to reach a 100% consensus, since at this point, they remain widely apart even on the conceptual level.”
Trump also offered an olive branch to Xi on Huawei Technologies Co, the world’s biggest telecom network equipment maker.
The Trump administration has said the Chinese firm poses a national security risk given its close ties to China’s government, and has lobbied US allies to keep Huawei out of next-generation 5G telecommunications infrastructure.
The Chinese government’s top diplomat, State Councillor Wang Yi, in a lengthy statement about G20 released by the Foreign Ministry following the delegation’s return to Beijing, said the Xi-Trump meeting had sent a “positive signal” to the world.
Though problems between the two countries remain, China is confident as long as they both followed the consensus reached by their leaders they could resolve their problems on the basis of mutual respect, Wang said in the statement released late Saturday.
Trump’s comments on Huawei, made at a more than hour-long news conference in Osaka following his sit-down with Xi, generated only a cautious welcome from China.
The word “Huawei” was not mentioned at all in the top diplomat’s appraisal of G20. — Reuters