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President Trump Talks Tough on Trade with Chinese Leader


Both Leaders United on North Korean Nuclear Issue


By:  David Deschesne

Fort Fairfield Journal, November 22, 2017


   On Wednesday, November 8 U.S. President, Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump traveled to Beijing, People’s Republic of China, where they were welcomed by President Xi Jingping and Madame Peng Liyuan for tea, a tour of the Forbidden City, and a viewing of an opera performance in the evening.

   President Trump stressed to President Xi that China’s unfair trade practices and America’s massive trade deficit with China is not sustainable and highlighted his Administration’s determination to defend America’s economic interests.

   “President Xi and I discussed improving our economic relationship. We want a vibrant trade relationship with China. We also want a fair and reciprocal one. Today, I discussed with President Xi the chronic imbalance in our relationship as it pertains to trade, and the concrete steps that we'll jointly take to solve the problem of the massive trade distortion,” President Trump said in an address before the Great Hall of the People.  “This includes addressing China’s market access restrictions and technology transfer requirements, which prevent American companies from being able to fairly compete within China.”

   “The United States is committed to protecting the intellectual property of our companies and providing a level playing field for our workers...As part of our commitment to regional stability and peace, the United States also continues to advocate for reforms that advance economic freedom, individual rights, and the rule of law.”

   During the President's visit to China several major cooperation agreements were signed by U.S. and Chinese businesses totaling over $250 billion U.S. dollars in commercial deals and two-way investment agreements.

   “We believe that China and the United States are the two largest economies and important engines of global economic growth. We need to further expand trade and investment cooperation, strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination, pursue healthy, stable, and dynamically balanced economic and trade relations,” said China's President Xi.  “It is necessary to formulate and launch economic cooperation plan for the next phase to have continued in-depth discussion on trade imbalance, export, investment environment, market openness, and other issues, and work to support practical cooperation in energy, infrastructure, Belt and Road Initiative, and other areas.”

   President Xi says China's timetable and roadmap for opening up features a number of steps to promote market access. “This speaks volume of the broad space for further economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, which would deliver great benefits to the two peoples.”

   President Trump and President Xi also discussed ways that the United States and China can continue to apply pressure on North Korea and strengthen the international resolve to de-nuclearize the regime entirely.  “On the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, we reiterated the firm commitment to achieving denuclearization of the Peninsula and upholding international nonproliferation regime,” said President Xi.  “The two sides will continue to fully and strictly implement U.N. Security Council resolutions. At the same time, the two sides commit to working toward a solution through dialogue and negotiation. And we are ready to discuss with relevant parties the pathway leading to enduring peace and stability in the Peninsula and the Northeast Asia. The two sides will maintain communication and cooperation on the Korean Peninsula issue.”

   The two leaders also discussed a greater cooperation amongst law enforcement for dealing with international crime between the two countries and agreed that neither wants to become a safe haven for the other's fugitives.  Law enforcement agencies in both countries are being directed to   actively explore a long-term cooperation mechanism regarding fugitive assets recovery and repatriation of illegal immigrants.

   “The United States and China also face many challenges within our borders. Every year, drug trafficking destroys millions and millions of lives,” said President Trump. “Today, President Xi and I discussed ways we can enhance coordination to better counter the deadly drug trade and to stop the lethal flow of poisonous drugs into our countries and into our communities. A special emphasis will be placed on the new phenomena: fentanyl -- destroying lives by the millions. We're going to be focusing on it very strongly, the President and myself.”

   President Xi said he and President Trump will continue the implementation of the five-point consensus reached in 2015 to enhance cybersecurity cooperation, including the use of the internet for terrorist purposes and tackling cybercrimes. “We will deepen counter-narcotics cooperation and better protect each other's nationals and institutions in their respective countries.”

   “As two distinctive countries, our two sides may have different views or differences on some issues. This is only natural,” said President Xi. “The key is to properly handle and manage them. There is far more common interests between our two countries than differences. It is important to respect each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, respect each other's choice of development path and our difference[s]. As long as the two sides commit to a constructive approach, we can put aside undiffused differences, while at the same time build common ground and advanced cooperation.”

  After concluding his trip in China,  President Trump visited Vietnam and the Philippines.