Economy

Trump defends tariff threat against Mexico, calls it 'beautiful thing'

Trump defends tariff threat against Mexico, calls it 'beautiful thing'”

"China is going to make a deal because they are going to have to make a deal", Trump said. But trade talks with China hit an impasse last month after the president accused Beijing of reneging on provisions of a tentative agreement.

"China does not want to fight a trade war, but is not afraid of one".

But in his lengthy CNBC interview, Trump said he is doing what previous presidents avoided because they "either didn't understand it or they were bored by it or they weren't smart enough".

Trump again hinted that part of the deal he struck with Mexico is not yet public.

"Well I guess he's not so brilliant", Trump said, riffing off of the Chamber official's last name. "At the same time it could be very well that we do something with respect to Huawei as part of our trade negotation with China".

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Saturday that the leaders' meeting has some parallels with their Buenos Aires summit last December, which saw Washington postpone a tariff hike while the two sides resumed negotiations. "They want to make a deal much more than I do, but we'll see what happens". If the USA side is willing to have equal consultations then our door is open.

The US Trade Representative office has launched the process to impose the huge new duties, with a hearing scheduled for June 17 - but Trump has said he has yet to decide whether he will ultimately impose the levies.

In retaliation, China has slapped tariffs on $110 billion worth of United States goods.

"Those companies are going to move into other locations and there won't be a tariff", he said.

"Huawei is very powerful, very strong", he said in the interview.

US and Chinese flags are seen in front of a USA dollar banknote featuring American founding father Benjamin Franklin and a China's yuan banknote featuring late Chinese chairman Mao Zedong in this illustration picture taken May 20, 2019. Trump has repeatedly said he is getting ready to meet Xi at the Osaka summit at the end of June, but China has not confirmed it.

Trump said if Chinese President Xi Jinping did not attend the G-20 meeting, tariffs would go into effect immediately.

However, as US-Chinese tensions mount, a spokesman for Xi's government said last month that he had "no information at present" on Trump-Xi talks. Trump said on CNBC that the USA purposely isn't discussing one of the aspects of the agreement yet, claiming that it is another "very powerful tool" for the U.S. "Look, without tariffs, we would be captive to every country, and we have been for many years". "It will be revealed in the not too distant future and will need a vote by Mexico's Legislative body!"



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