US President Donald Trump called on his counterpart, Xi Jinping, to do more to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue and said that bilateral trade had been unfair to the US.

US President Donald Trump continued formal talks with his counter part Chinese President Xi Jinping with a joint statement on Thursday. Hot topics were the complete de-nuclearisation of of North Korea and economic  relations between China and the US. November 9, 2017.
US President Donald Trump continued formal talks with his counter part Chinese President Xi Jinping with a joint statement on Thursday. Hot topics were the complete de-nuclearisation of of North Korea and economic relations between China and the US. November 9, 2017. (Reuters)

United States President Donald Trump criticised the "very one-sided and unfair" trade relationship between the US and China in a joint conference with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping  on Thursday. 

Speaking after the announcement of new business deals between the two countries, Trump said that the US and China "must immediately address the unfair trade practices that drive" the trade deficit, along with barriers to market success, forced technology transfers and intellectual property theft.

The leaders also talked about tensions in the Korean peninsula and China's trade surplus over the US. 

The US as well as other trading partners have been pressing Beijing to give their companies more access to its state-dominated economy.

TRT World's Caitlin McGee reports.

'One-sided and unfair'

Trump stopped short of castigating Xi by saying he doesn't blame the country for taking advantage of the US.

"But I don't blame China," he said. "After all, who can blame a country for being able to take advantage of another country for the benefit of its citizens?

To applause, he said, "I give China great credit."

For his part, Xi promised a more open business environment for foreign companies in China and said his country was committed to further opening its economy to foreign investment.

"China will not close its doors" and will open them "even wider," he said, pledging that foreign companies in China, including American ones, will find the market "more open, more transparent and more orderly."

$250 billion in agreements signed

Trump's comments came during his second day in China and after lengthy meetings with Xi. 

The day included announcements that the US and China had signed agreements valued at more than $250 billion for products including US-made jet engines, auto parts, liquefied natural gas, and beef.

Such contract signings are a fixture of foreign leader visits to Beijing and are intended to defuse foreign complaints about China's trade policies. 

Others included a cooperation framework on shale gas and a memorandum of understanding on industrial development.

US trade deficit with China

Trump had made China's multibillion-dollar trade surplus over the US a priority for his administration. During the presidential campaign, he accused China of "raping our country" on trade and pledged to minimise the countries' trade imbalance.

China's trade surplus with the US in October widened by 12.2 percent from a year earlier, to $26.6 billion, according to Chinese customs data released on Wednesday. The total surplus with the US for the first 10 months of the year rose to $223 billion.

Tensions on the North Korean peninsula

North Korea continued to be a hot topic during the US president's visit. 

Trump pressed China to tighten the screws further on North Korea and its development of nuclear weapons. 

After previously warning Pyongyang of the danger of developing nuclear weapons, Trump told Xi that he believes, like Xi, a solution can be found on the North Korean nuclear issue.

Referring to Xi, Trump said, "I do believe there's a solution to that, as do you."

Xi reiterated that China would strive for the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula but offered no hint that China would change tack on North Korea.

"We are devoted to reaching a resolution to the Korean peninsula issue through dialogue and consultations," Xi said.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies