April 6, 2018 / 5:39 PM / a year ago

Treasury's Mnuchin: U.S. talking to China, will defend interests - CNBC

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin testifies before a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Fiscal Yeah (FY) 2019 budget on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 14, 2018. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said on Friday that U.S. officials including himself are in regular communication with China as a tariff dispute escalates between the two countries.

“We are willing to negotiate. We are in communication with them regularly,” Mnuchin said in an interview with CNBC. “I am in communications.”

“On the one hand, we absolutely are willing to negotiate and not get into trade wars but on the other hand, the president is perfectly willing to defend interests.”

Reporting by Lindsey Dunsmuir and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Tim Ahmann

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