President Trump on Tuesday called the trade dispute between the U.S. and China a “little squabble,” as he sought to calm financial markets rattled by the escalating standoff involving the world’s two largest economies.
“We’re having a little squabble with China because we’ve been treated very, very unfairly for many decades,” Trump told reporters at the White House before departing for Louisiana. “I think it’s going to turn out extremely well, we’re in a strong position.”
Trump said his “extraordinary” relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping remains “very good” and insisted that talks with Beijing have not collapsed, even though he decided to raise tariffs on Chinese goods after negotiations ended last week without a deal.
“We have a very good dialogue going. It will always continue,” the president said.
Trump said Chinese officials “want to make a deal” and an agreement “could absolutely happen” but said the U.S. is happy to collect additional revenue from tariffs in the meantime.
“You want to know something? We always win,” he added.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 closed on Monday in the worst day since Jan. 3 after China said it would ramp up tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. imports in retaliation for Trump’s decision.
Trump said he “wasn’t surprised” by the increased Chinese tariffs, but said he is looking "very strongly” at slapping new tariffs on an additional $325 billion in Chinese goods, which would cover almost all of the imports the U.S. brings in from China and dramatically escalate the conflict.
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