The stand-off over US-China trade talks could last for some time with Beijing in no rush for US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to visit, according to Chinese analysts. Mnuchin said on Wednesday that he would most likely go to China soon for another round of negotiations, but Chinese state media have since gone on offensive, saying Beijing is prepared to suspend trade talks if Washington keeps up its tough action. Tensions have escalated between the two countries in the last week, with the United States and China imposing fresh tariffs on each other’s goods, China cancelling orders for American pork and Washington stepping up scrutiny of Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies. US business news outlet CNBC reported on Saturday that there had been no scheduling discussions between China and the US for Mnuchin’s visit since his comment on Wednesday. Tao Wenzhao, an international relations expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said there was no harm to China in waiting a while for Mnuchin’s visit. “There is no need to get into frantic calculations about when he will come if the US continues to lack sincerity. After all, enough has been said by both sides in so many rounds of discussions,” Tao said. He said further talks would only be meaningful “when the US finally wakes up” and realised that a trade war was not beneficial. Peking University international relations professor Jia Qingguo agreed that Mnuchin’s visit would only be possible if the US was prepared to be realistic. “The stand-off should last for a while because the US has refused to make even the slightest compromise – to a point that is somewhat unreasonable,” Jia said. “It is unreasonable for the US to insist on high tariffs when reaching an agreement. Another thing is the US’ approach towards Huawei and hi-tech issues, which has been about resistance rather than reaching a fair deal.” Sun Zhe, co-director of the China Initiative at Columbia University, was more hopeful about prospects for a Mnuchin visit, saying neither country would want to waste the effort already spent during the months of talks. “When international relations hit the end of the rope, they often make a sudden comeback. Based on the practical needs for the two nations, both sides must sit down to reach a deal,” Sun said. But a deal rested on three bottom lines, Vice-Premier Liu He said last week after wrapping up a trip to Washington. How Donald Trump’s tweets outgunned China’s heavy media weapons in the trade war publicity battle Sun said two of those demands – that all tariffs be scrapped and any forced increases in China’s purchases of US goods be practical – should be easy enough to work out. Sun said it would be humiliating for China to appear to be bowing to US pressure. “The key lies in a balance and fair agreement. The language in a leaked draft agreement makes it hard for the Chinese to accept,” he said. Despite worsening sentiment on both sides, Sun said he expected there would be a return to rational discussion. “Even the US and North Korea can reach some sort of agreement. It is all the more for the US and China to make a breakthrough,” he said. Sun said it would be a major setback for both countries and raise the risk of all-round confrontation if China and the US failed to reach a deal by the Group of 20 summit next month. Chinese state media has been drumming up rhetoric against the US in the last few days. On Saturday, Communist Party mouthpiece People’s Daily ran a column rejecting claims that China had been forcing foreign companies to transfer technology. And at least two state media outlets ran articles attacking Steve Bannon, a former strategist to US President Donald Trump.