China’s Premier Li Keqiang said on Wednesday (March 15) that Beijing does not want to see a trade war with the United States and urged talks between both sides to achieve common ground.
“We do not want to see any trade war breaking out between the two countries. That would not make our trade fairer,” Li said at his annual news conference at the end of the annual meeting of China’s parliament.
“Our hope on the Chinese side is that no matter what bumps this relationship hits, we hope it will continue to move forward in a positive direction,” he said.
“We may have different statistical methods, but I believe whatever differences we may have, we can all sit down and talk to each other and work together to find solutions,” Li said.
Issues that cannot immediately be solved should be “shelved” for the time being, he added.
U.S. media have reported that U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet in Florida next month.
Trump has commented on China issues ranging from trade to the South China Sea and what he perceives as China’s lack of interest in reining in nuclear-armed North Korea.
During the election campaign, Trump had claimed he would label China a currency manipulator and impose huge tariffs on Chinese imports.
He has not followed through on either move yet, but the U.S. Treasury will issue its semi-annual currency report in April.