Trump says no deadline for China trade deal

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President Trump said Tuesday that he doesn’t have a deadline for reaching a trade agreement with China and “in some ways” it might be better to wait until after the 2020 election to reach a deal.

“I don’t have a deadline,” Trump told reporters during a meeting with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in London. “In some ways, I think it’s better to wait until after the election with China.”

“But they want to make a deal now, and we’ll see whether or not the deal’s going to be right, it’s got to be right,” Trump said.

Trump was asked about ongoing trade discussions with China on the sidelines of a NATO summit in London.

Washington has been locked in a trade dispute with Beijing since last year, when Trump first levied tariffs on goods from China. Both sides have since imposed tariffs on one another, ratcheting up the dispute.

Trump announced in October that his administration had reached an initial “phase one” trade agreement with China after another round of discussions between U.S. and Chinese officials. Trump initially said he hoped to sign the deal during the APEC summit in Chile that had been scheduled for mid-November but was canceled.

Trump has said the two countries could sign the “phase one” deal at a meeting in the U.S. but the administration has not said when a finalized agreement can be expected or when it might be signed.

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