By Zeke Miller, Associated Press
LONDON (AP) — President Donald Trump appeared to downplay the chances for a deal to end the U.S.-China trade war before the end of the year.
Speaking in London he is attending a NATO summit, Trump said Tuesday that the only limiting factor to reaching an agreement with China is whether he wants to make a deal.
Asked about his previous goal of reaching an agreement by years’ end, Trump told reporters, ”I have no deadline, no.”
“In some ways I like the idea of waiting until after the election,” Trump added. He has previously suggested that China wanted to wait until after the election to negotiate a deal.
Tensions between the two nations flared anew last week after Trump signed legislation expressing U.S. support for pro-democracy demonstrators in Hong Kong.
The U.S.-China trade talks face a Dec. 15 deadline for new U.S. tariffs to kick in on many Chinese-made items, including smartphones and laptops.
Pressure is building on both sides to complete what Trump has called a limited “phase one” deal before the deadline, though Trump could end up postponing the tariffs, as he did in October, to allow more time for negotiations.