US President Donald Trump said yesterday he didn't expect to meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping before a March 1 deadline in trade-war negotiations between the two economic superpowers.
"Not yet," Trump told reporters at the White House when asked if a meeting had been arranged for within the next month.
He said the final resolution of trade-dispute will depend on the future meeting.
Trump to meet Kim in Vietnam later this month
The final resolution of trade dispute would depend on him and Xi meeting "in the near future", said Trump. There had been speculation that Trump might meet Xi after he flies to Vietnam later this month for a summit with North Korea's Kim Jong-un.
US threatened to more than double existing tariffs on Chinese-goods
The United States has threatened to more than double existing tariffs on Chinese goods at the start of March if there's no agreement on measures to reform China's trade practices, which Washington says are deeply unfair.
Whereas top White House economist Larry Kudlow said yesterday that while Trump was "optimistic" about prospects for a deal, there remained a "sizeable distance" separating the two sides.
Dow Jones lost more than 300 points following Kudlow's remarks
The benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average lost more than 300 points following Kudlow's remarks but pared some of these losses, closing down 0.9% for the day.
Last week, Trump and Chinese officials had expressed optimism during the second round of talks in Washington about chances of striking a bargain but they released only a few details about progress in their talks.
Trade Representative, Treasury Secretary may travel to China next week
The two sides have three weeks before the US duty rates on many Chinese goods are due to jump sharply, which the economists say could further weaken the global economy.
US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are due to travel to China next week to continue for the third round of trade negotiations before the deadline comes to an end.
US and China on a 90-day hiatus from trade war
Washington is demanding far-reaching changes to Chinese industrial policy, which American officials allege involves the theft of American intellectual property and massive market distortions through subsidies and other measures. Both the countries had taken a 90-day break from the trade war to strike a deal.