China said on Friday it was dropping an anti-dumping probe into imports of USA sorghum, a conciliatory gesture as top officials meet in Washington in an effort to head off a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.
Trump criticized China earlier on Thursday as being "very spoiled" on trade with the United States but said he was aiming for an overall deal with Beijing.
In return, China is asking the United States to set aside tariffs and investment restrictions it has threatened against Chinese companies, the report said.
A White House statement described the meetings as part of "ongoing trade discussions" and said Trump met the Chinese delegation led by Vice Premier Liu He and the US team led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
"Chinese negotiators are preparing to offer the administration a deal to buy up to United States dollars 200 billion worth of American goods, which would allow Trump to claim victory in his campaign to reduce the trade deficit with China and rebalance America's trade relationship with its biggest economic rival, according to people briefed on the deliberations", The New York Times reported.
The announcement on sorghum imports came from the Commerce Ministry in Beijing on Friday morning, and was not explicitly linked to the trade talks.
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But the move will inevitably be seen as a gesture aimed at creating some goodwill in Washington as trade talks continue Friday. But it is still not a big deal compared with the overall trade deficit in goods, which reached $375 billion previous year.
The US, the world's largest economy, has a trade deficit of nearly Dollars 500 billion with the world's second largest economy China.
The United States' two biggest exports to China were aircraft at $16 billion a year ago, and soybeans, at $12 billion.
China has also been pressing the United States to lift a crippling ban on the sale of American parts to ZTE, a big Chinese maker of smartphones and telecommunications equipment. But Trump tweeted Wednesday that "nothing has happened with ZTE except as it pertains to the larger trade deal".
Trump said Sunday that he was working on giving ZTE "a way to get back into business, fast", adding that he had instructed the US Commerce Department to "get it done".
The Washington talks follow tit-for-tat levies and threats of more duties, with the USA mulling 25 per cent punitive duties on up to $150 billion (Dh550 billion) in Chinese goods and Beijing targeting $50 billion in U.S. exports. Beijing had previously accused American farmers of dumping sorghum on its markets and announced last month it would start putting a huge import charge on the crop.
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