US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said in a statement on Twitter that China’s top diplomat this week recommitted to carrying out Beijing’s obligations under the Phase One of the trade agreement between the United States and China.
Chinese Communist Party Politburo member Yang Jiechi said that Beijing is “ready to make joint efforts with the United States to develop relations without conflict and confrontation, based on mutual respect and mutually beneficial cooperation, while defending the interests of its sovereignty, security and development”.
The statement comes after the sides fully clarified the positions of the two states on problematic issues and recognised that the current meeting was constructive.
Under US President Donald Trump’s administration, Sino-American relations have considerably worsened, with Washington accusing Beijing of unfair trade practices, human rights violations in some of its regions, and encroachment on the special status of Hong Kong. The US has imposed several rounds of sanctions on China. Beijing has denied the accusations and, in turn, pointed to various violations of international law on the part of the United States.
In May, Mike Pompeo expressed doubts about Hong Kong maintaining a significant level of autonomy from China, suggesting that Washington could change its policy towards the special administrative region in light of the alleged interference with the free press, something that Chinese authorities have denied.
US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping signed their so-called Phase One deal in January after a year-long tariff war between the two world powers. Under the agreement, China agreed to increase its purchases of US goods and services by at least $200 billion over the next two years compared to 2017. For its part, the United States agreed to trim some tariffs, but would maintain them on $360 billion worth of Chinese imports.