White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said President Donald Trump isn't satisfied with the progress of trade talks with China.
“Nothing is imminent on China,” Kudlow told Fox Business Network. “I think there’s discussions going on. No, I wouldn’t say it was imminent,” said Kudlow, director of the White House National Economic Council.
Kudlow spoke just before Trump took credit for salvaging a trilateral free trade accord with Canada and Mexico, marking it as a victory in his campaign to reshape global commerce as financial markets breathed a sigh of relief.
The deal, announced on Sunday, is a reworking of the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement, which underpins $1.2 trillion in trade between the three countries. Trump had described NAFTA as a bad deal for Americans and threatened to eliminate it as part of his “America First” agenda, Reuters explained.
The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is aimed at bringing more jobs into the United States, with Canada and Mexico accepting more restrictive commerce with the United States, their main export partner.
While changing NAFTA and bringing down U.S. trade deficits was a top Trump campaign pledge, Sunday’s agreement largely leaves the broader deal intact and maintains supply chains that would have been fractured under weaker bilateral deals.
Kudlow applauded the NAFTA pact as well.
“It sends an important message to China, where we’re trying to negotiate on trade, North America is together,” said Kudlow, who served as the Trump campaign's senior economic adviser.
“I would say frankly as the president has said he’s not been satisfied with the progress of those talks,” Kudlow told Stuart Varney. “[There] really hasn’t been much progress recently,” said Kudlow, who worked as Reagan’s budget deputy between 1981 and 1985.
However, Kudlow hinted at a potential meeting between Trump and President Xi at the next G-20 summit set for November, Fox Business Network explained.
“He has admiration for President Xi and they may, may perhaps, meet at the G-20 in Buenos Aires later this year,” Kudlow said. “But no, nothing is imminent on China but we are willing to talk if it’s substantial and significant and serious—always willing to talk.”
Kudlow said the U.S.-China talks so far have been centered on corporate ownership and IP theft.
“One of the key things, Stu, is ownership — United States companies operating in China instead of joint ventures where the Chinese own the majority,” the veteran financial guru and former Ronald Reagan adviser said.
“We should own the majority, in fact, we should own all of it because that’s where the technology, the forced technology, transfers occur. Their board, they own the company, you have to put your blue print on the table — that’s unacceptable.”
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