China says it will strive to reach an initial trade agreement with the United States as both sides keep communication channels open.
The Spokeman for the Chinese Commerce Ministry, Gao Feng, made this known on Thursday, in an attempt to allay fears talks might be unraveling.
He explained that China was willing to work with the United States to resolve each other’s core concerns on the basis of equality and mutual respect, and would try hard to reach a “phase one”
“This is in line with the interests of both China and the United States, and of the world,” Gao said.
Economists warn that the prolonged trade dispute between China and the United States is escalating risks to the global economy by disrupting supply chains, discouraging investment and dampening business confidence.
Completion of a phase one deal could slide into next year, trade experts and people close to the White House told Reuters previously, as Beijing presses for more extensive tariff rollbacks and the U.S. administration counters with heightened demands of its own.
Global equities retreated on Thursday due to concerns that the ‘phase one’ deal would be delayed.
The trade jitters also sent the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield down to near its lowest levels in three weeks while the Chinese yuan also softened against the dollar.
Officials from Beijing had suggested that Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. counterpart Donald Trump might sign a deal in early December.