SELİN ATAY-TDO-The Chinese president said he wants to strike a deal with the US but is "not afraid" of a trade war. Fears that talks could collapse grew after US lawmakers passed a bill backing protesters in Hong Kong.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Friday that China holds a "positive attitude" toward trade talks with the US, but would "fight" to get the best terms.
"As we always said we don't want to start the trade war but we are not afraid," Xi said, responding to questions from representatives of the New Economy Forum, held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
"When necessary we will fight back, but we have been working actively to try not to have a trade war," he said. He added that the nation was working towards a "phase one agreement on the basis of mutual respect and equality."
Recently, Chinese Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said at a news conference that the Beijing administration was trying to resolve the trade crisis with the United States, dismissing speculation about trade talks.
"We are trying to conclude our talks in the first phase of the trade agreement," he said, stressing that he would act with the United States on the basis of equality and mutual respect. “The deal would benefit both sides as well as the whole world." he added.
China and the US have been locked into an extended trade war for more than a year, over what the US viewed as China's unfair protectionist policies and intellectual property theft.