Trump says `big progress being made' with China after Xi call

Donald Trump

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The two nations have been in a trade war for much of 2018 that has seen the flow of hundreds of billions of dollars worth of goods between the world's two largest economies disrupted by tariffs.

On Twitter, President Trump said he "just had a long and a very good call with President Xi of China", and that the two covered "all subjects, areas and points of dispute".

Trump says the agreement will be very comprehensive and will cover "points of dispute". The president wants us to make a deal. "Big progress being made!" A standstill agreement reached between US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart on the margins of the G20 summit at Buenos Aires in November deferred the imposition of tit-for-tat tariffs by the two countries till March.

Xi said Saturday that officials from both countries have been working actively and hopes the teams can meet each other halfway, Xinhua reported.

While investors have anxious over the trade war between the world's two biggest economies, relations have thawed since Xi and Trump struck a 90-day trade truce in early December while the two sides work to ease tensions by March 1. According to Reuters, Chinese media says Xi hopes the two countries can meet in the middle.

Prior to Saturday's call, there had been small signs of progress - and the absence of new threats from Trump.

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Global investors have cited the US-China trade war as a factor rattling markets. In retaliation, China imposed tariffs on $110 billion of American goods.

Trump initiated the trade war because of complaints over unfair Chinese trade practices - concerns shared by the European Union, Japan and others.

The Chinese leader expressed a wish to develop trade, economic, military, law enforcement and anti-drug cooperation with the United States next year that will mark the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the bilateral relations.

"In January, in addition to maintaining intensive telephone consultations, the two sides have made specific arrangements for face-to-face consultations". It's another sign that tensions may be cooling after months of brinkmanship, and that the leaders are following through on commitments made at their dinner meeting in Buenos Aires on December 1.

The two leaders spoke as a US trade delegation prepares to travel to Beijing for talks slated for the week of January 7, Bloomberg News reported Wednesday, citing two people familiar with the matter.

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