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China-US relations

China says ‘good preparations’ should be made for Trump’s visit

A successful trip can help to give ‘fresh impetus to bilateral ties’, foreign minister says

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 21 September, 2017, 3:26pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 September, 2017, 10:54pm

“Good preparations” should be made by China and the United States to ensure the success of US President Donald Trump’s visit to China later this year, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told US Vice-President Mike Pence.

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 Xinhua on Thursday.

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Close communications between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Trump had 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 was 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 said.

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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.

Xi 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 Organisation.

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