October 18, 2019 / 5:17 PM / a month ago

Trump hopes U.S.-China trade deal will be signed by middle of November

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump listens during a joint news conference with Italy's President Sergio Mattarella in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., October 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday said he thinks a trade deal between the United States and China will be signed by the time the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings take place in Chile on Nov. 16 and 17.

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He will provide Beijing’s perspective on the progress of the talks in a speech on Saturday, according to a tweet from editor-in-chief of the Global Times, a tabloid published by the People’s Daily of China’s ruling Communist Party.

“I think it will get signed quite easily, hopefully by the summit in Chile, where President Xi and I will both be,” Trump told reporters at the White House, without providing details.

“We’re working with China very well,” Trump also said.

The White House has announced that China agreed to buy up to $50 billion of U.S. farm products annually, as part of the first phase of a trade deal, although China seems slow to follow through.

The so-called phase 1 deal was unveiled at the White House last week during a visit by vice premier He as part of a bid to end a tit-for-tat trade war between Beijing and Washington that has roiled markets and hammered global growth. U.S. officials said a second phase of negotiations could address thornier issues like forced technology transfer and non-financial services issues.

Reporting by Steve Holland, Susan Heavey and Lisa Lambert in Washington; additional reporting by Ismail Shakil; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Grant McCool

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