Donald J. Trump has called China a “currency manipulator,” threatened to impose stiff tariffs on Chinese imports and accused the country of inventing the idea of climate change to hurt American businesses.
But in his first telephone conversation with President Xi Jinping of China, Mr. Trump, now the president-elect, appeared to set aside those critiques expressed on the campaign trail, vowing that the two nations would have “one of the strongest relationships,” according to a statement released by Mr. Trump’s transition office, Reuters reported.
Mr. Xi, in turn, told Mr. Trump that “facts have shown that cooperation is the only correct choice” for the United States and China, according to Xinhua, the Chinese state news agency.
In the phone call, which took place on Monday Beijing time, the two men agreed to maintain close communications and to meet at an early date.
Despite the optimistic tone, analysts believe the relationship between Mr. Trump and Mr. Xi could grow tense if Mr. Trump follows through on his campaign promises, including a vow to impose a 45 percent tax on Chinese imports. Already, foreign policy experts in China appear to be nervous about the prospect of a trade war.
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Image courtesy of Reuters