USA trade team arrives in Beijing for talks, China media cautious

USA trade team arrives in Beijing for talks, China media cautious

After China roundly rejected the possibility of discussing key sources of trade friction identified by the Trump administration, one member of the trade delegation headed to Beijing today did little to raise expectations for a deal.

The discussions, led by US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, are expected to cover a wide range of US complaints about China's trade practices, from allegations of forced technology transfers to state subsidies for technology development.

The U.S. now has a $375 billion trade deficit with China, and the Trump administration claims that new trade policies could work to even the score.

U.S. President Donald Trump's chief trade negotiator said on Tuesday he was not looking to negotiate changes to China's state-driven economic system in trade talks in Beijing this week but would seek to expose it to more foreign competition.

Consultation between China and the United States on economic and trade issues will be constructive as long as the US delegation comes with sincerity, said a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wednesday.

Mnuchin and new White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow are seen as likely to favor a package that keeps financial markets on an even keel and doesn't interfere with strong economic growth.

Earlier Tuesday, Ross played down the possibility of a breakthrough.

He said it was in the USA interest to encourage China to open its economy to US and other foreign firms, not only for increased sales to China's consumers but to foster market competition in China.

"President Trump is of the view it is now time for action", Ross said when asked whether a deal might come out of the trip.

"If the US delegation comes to China believing Beijing's resolve to open wider to the outside world is a matter of expediency under pressure from Washington, it will likely mean a lot of time is wasted setting the record straight".

Speaking to CNBC television before traveling to China, Ross said he had "some hope" agreements could be reached to resolve the trade tensions between the two sides.

"This won't be, suddenly in Beijing, a breathtaking release (that) everything is solved", Ross said.

"There has been talking between the two countries for years and years and years". "Very much like North Korea, this should have been fixed years ago, not now. Great Potential for US!"

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