China says working with U.S. day and night to get trade deal

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FILE PHOTO: Chinese Vice Commerce Minister and Deputy China International Trade Representative Wang Shouwen attends a news conference in Beijing, China, April 4, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

BEIJING (Reuters) – China and the United States are still working day and night to achieve a trade deal that matches the interests of both sides and the hopes of the world, Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said on Saturday.

Wang, speaking at a news conference on the sidelines of China’s ongoing annual meeting of parliament, has been deeply involved in the trade talks with the United States.

Wang said he was optimistic about negotiations with Washington, and that the two sides are working on a deal to eliminate the tariffs imposed on each other during the trade war, as tit-for-tat tariffs are not beneficial for either.

But any trade mechanism achieved must be equal and fair, he said.

Trump administration officials have not made any new plans to send a team to China for face-to-face trade talks though there is much work left to be done to reach a deal, White House trade adviser Clete Willems said on Friday.

The governments of the world’s two largest economies have been locked in a tariff battle for months as Washington presses Beijing to address long-standing concerns over Chinese practices and policies around industrial subsidies, technology transfers, market access and intellectual property rights.

Advances in talks drove the White House to indefinitely delay hikes in tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports that were set to kick in on March 2.

Reporting by Ryan Woo and Yawen Chen; Writing by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Michael Perry

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