The Latest: Trump wants China to cut trade deficit by $200B

The Latest on China-U.S. trade talks in Beijing (all times local):

6:25 p.m.

The Trump administration wants China to reduce the trade deficit with the U.S. by $200 billion by the end of 2020.

A U.S. official confirmed the authenticity of a document making that and other requests presented to China ahead of trade talks that ended Friday.

The four-page list also included demands that China immediately stop providing subsidies to industries listed in a key industrial plan. The list also includes a demand that China end some of its policies related to technology transfers, a key source of tension underlying the dispute.

China’s Commerce Ministry did not mention the U.S. demands in a comment about the talks Friday.


4:45 p.m.

China’s Commerce Ministry says U.S. officials have agreed at trade talks to raise China’s objections to sanctions leveled against Chinese telecom gear maker ZTE with President Donald Trump.

Ministry spokesman Ying Xun says China lodged its complaints during meetings Thursday and Friday with the delegation led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Ying says the U.S. side took the complaints seriously and agreed to report them to Trump.

China objected strongly when the U.S. last month banned American companies from selling technology to ZTE for seven years, calling that unfair.

ZTE pleaded guilty in March 2017 and agreed to pay a $1.19 billion penalty for having shipped equipment to Iran and North Korea in violation of U.S. regulations. The U.S. Commerce Department said employees involved were paid bonuses instead of being punished.


4:30 p.m.

China’s state media says talks in Beijing with U.S. officials ended with an agreement to set up a mechanism to work through an escalating dispute over trade. But it said “big differences” remain on some matters.

Citing the Commerce Ministry, the official Xinhua News Agency said Friday that the two sides discussed expanding U.S. exports to China, trade in services, the protection of intellectual property rights and how to resolve the use of tariffs and non-tariff measures.

The report says the two sides “reached consensus in some areas,” but did not provide specifics.

Earlier Friday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin sounded a positive note about talks aimed at easing tensions that have taken the countries close to a trade war.