China says Xi-Trump phone call 'extremely positive'

World stock markets rally on news of Trump Xi talks

TRUMP and Xi Jinping expressed optimism ahead of meeting later this month in Argentina, with the U.S. leader saying his Chinese counterpart wants to make a deal to end an escalating trade war. It is not yet clear, however, if Trump reduced his demands on China or if Beijing offered additional trade concessions.

Trump said trade talks were "moving along nicely" and that meetings were "being scheduled" at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires.

Trump, who began targeting China's trade policies before he entered office, has imposed three rounds of tariffs on Chinese products worth more than $250bn since the beginning of his administration.

Trump said if the United States could strike a fair deal with China that would open up its market, he would be very willing to do so.

The president added that he would have a dinner with Xi at the G20 summit, wherein they would be discussing the issue.

"I agree, this phone conversation was an extremely positive phone conversation", Lu said at a regular briefing.

US President Donald Trump is convinced that the United States and China can come to a deal about their trade dispute.

"The economic teams of the two countries should strengthen contact, conduct consultations on issues of mutual concern, and push for a mutually acceptable solution to China-US economic and trade issues", Xi said.

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"This not only benefits our two countries but also benefits the whole world", he said. According to Trump, a lot of progress has already been made to help resolve the dispute between the two superpowers.

The United States has already imposed tariffs on US$250 billion worth of Chinese goods, and China has responded with retaliatory duties on US$110 billion worth of USA goods.

Thursday's meeting was the first telephone conversation between the leaders in six months of which is openly reported.

"We've talked about trade".

"If this does turn out to be ZTE round 2, the president will be attacked by Democrats, and some Republicans, for talking a huge game on China but instead being played", said Derek Scissors, a China expert at the American Enterprise Institute.

A key point of contention for the USA has been its allegations that China has engaged in widespread intellectual property theft.

The possible thaw in relations comes after months of escalating tensions over trade that threatened to spill into other areas of disagreement, including China's military build-up in the South China Sea.

The last round of trade talks with China ended in August with no concrete steps toward reaching a deal.

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