Washington – Away from White House protocols, US President Donald Trump headed to his Spanish-style Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, to launch talks with his Chinese counterpart and the head of the world’s second biggest economy.
The two officials, along with the first ladies and other guests, had a cordial dinner and spent some social time on Thursday before digging into thorny bilateral security and trade issues.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has so far refrained to respond to the provocations of the US President, who has criticized China’s policies on several occasions since he took office in January.
Trump has accused the Asian country of manipulating its currency to make its exports more competitive globally and of failing to take a firm stance toward North Korea’s nuclear threats.
The president has said that if China doesn’t exert more pressure on North Korea, the US will act alone.
Meanwhile, diplomatic sources in Beijing said that Xi would offer his American counterpart some compromises on the commercial and investment levels, with promises to create jobs in the US, as reported by AFP.
Political Analyst Suzan Shirk said that the Chinese wanted to take advantage of Trump’s negotiation affinities and have proposed to invest in three US states, including Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin, and hence, creating 30 thousand new job opportunities.
While Trump and Xi are expected to get into more detailed discussions about trade and foreign policy on Friday, another crucial issue that would be tackled during the US-Chinese summit is how to persuade nuclear-armed North Korea to halt unpredictable behavior like missile test launches that have heightened tensions in South Korea and Japan.
The two presidents will conclude their summit on Friday with a working lunch.