September 21, 2017 / 6:43 AM / in a month

China says 'good preparations' should be made for Trump's visit

BEIJING (Reuters) - “Good preparations” should be made by China and the United States to ensure that U.S. President Donald Trump’s visit to China later this year is a success, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi told U.S. Vice President Mike Pence.

Flags of U.S. and China are placed for a meeting between Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and China's Minister of Agriculture Han Changfu at the Ministry of Agriculture in Beijing, China June 30, 2017. REUTERS/Jason Lee

Trump will likely visit China in November as part of a trip that will take him to an ASEAN summit in the Philippines and an APEC summit in Vietnam.

The two sides should make good preparations for the visit to ensure its success so that “concrete achievements can be obtained and conditions can be created for good prospects, giving fresh impetus to bilateral ties,” Wang said, according to the official Xinhua news agency on Thursday.

Close communications between Xi and Trump have meant a “smooth transition” and a “good start” in China’s relationship with the United States under the new administration, he said.

A “stable and healthy” relationship between the two countries is good for both countries and the international community, Wang told Pence on the sidelines of the annual general debate of the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday, Xinhua reported.

China’s relationship with the United States has been strained by the Trump administration’s criticism of China’s trade practices and by demands that Beijing do more to pressure North Korea to halt its nuclear weapons and missiles programmes.

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Trump met for the first time in person at Trump’s Mar-A-Lago estate in Florida in April. Trump has since played up his personal relationship with Xi, even when criticising China over North Korea and trade.

The two sides launched a 100-day economic plan at that meeting, including some industry-specific announcements such as the resumption of American beef sales in China.

There has since been limited progress on trade relations, especially after Trump began to launch trade investigations into Chinese practices via the World Trade Organization.

Trump’s administration has also repeatedly called on China to do more to rein in North Korea and has threatened new sanctions on Chinese banks and other firms doing business with Pyongyang.

China says it is already doing all it can to pressure North Korea and that those countries directly involved in the stand-off on the peninsula should take responsibility for resolving tensions.

Reporting by Christian Shepherd; Editing by Paul Tait

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