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What to expect from Trump’s first China visit as US president?
U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping during the plenary session at the G20 Summit on July 7, 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. Photo: Getty Images
US President Donald Trump will visit China from November 8 to 10 at the invitation of President Xi Jinping, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said on Thursday. According to an agenda released by the White House, Trump’s first trip to Asia since taking office also includes Japan, South Korea, Vietnam and the Philippines, reportedly the longest trip to Asia by any sitting US president this millennium. 
While Trump’s foreign policy agenda is rooted in his “America First” policy, trade and North Korea would be two highlights of his China agenda, according to experts.
Also, as 40 representatives from about 40 companies are expected to accompany Trump to China, according to a report by Bloomberg, business deals worth billions of US dollars which could help create lots of jobs in the US would also be the focus of attention during the 48-hour trip. 
North Korea
China has been under intense pressure from Trump, who has threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea, to do more to rein in on the country’s nuclear and ballistic missile tests. 
Although China has said it will strictly enforce UN Security Council sanctions banning imports of coal, textiles and seafood, while cutting off oil shipments to North Korea, it has so far failed to stop the North from conducting nuclear tests.
During Trump’s visit to Beijing, he will again call on Xi to fully implement sanctions against Pyongyang and do more to pressure North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. 
Last week, Kim sent a congratulatory message to Xi on a second term as general secretary of the Communist Party of China, and Xi replied to Kim expressing hope to promote ties between the two countries on Thursday. 
Xi’s message to Kim comes one day before Trump begins his Asia trip on Friday.
Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said “this is in the interest of both sides and has important meaning for resolving the present problem we are facing and maintaining regional peace and stability.”
“No matter it’s political, economic, military or diplomatic issue, China will always stick to the principle of no conflict and no confrontation, but only cooperation and mutual benefits,” said Teng Jianqun, senior research fellow at Center for China & Globalization (CCG). 
Trump repeatedly raised the issue of trade imbalance with China during his election campaign last year. After easing a little bit after the two presidents met in April, trade tensions between the two largest economies have again escalated with Trump calling the US trade deficit with China “embarrassing” and “horrible” on Wednesday, after the US Commerce Department said China dumped aluminium foil on the US market. 
But experts say maintaining good economic relations with China is still a priority for the US since it wants China to tackle the key geopolitical threat from North Korea. 
CNBC quoted Rajiv Riswas, chief economist for Asia Pacific at HIS Market, as saying that selective duties like that are not the same as “blunt bilateral trade measures that could endanger the overall bilateral geopolitical relationship with China.”
“Economic and trade relations between China and the US will always be the ballast stone for the overall relationship of bilateral ties. When economic and trade relations go smoothly, other issues could be solved more easily,” said Wang Huiyao, founder and president of CCG. 
Business deals
The business delegation that will accompany Trump will represent companies in a variety of sectors from life sciences to heavy machinery, according to Bloomberg. 
Since Trump became the president, the US has been pursuing a results-oriented approach in making both domestic and foreign policies. He has been trying to get China to make concessions that would reduce the bilateral trade deficit, increase American exports and gain more market access for US companies. 
“Among all the US presidents that have visited China since 1979, Trump is a unique one. He likes something pragmatic and pursues quick success, and China should not miss this point when communicating with Trump,” said Teng. 
President Xi has said during the 19th National Congress of Communist Party of China that China will not close its door to the world, and will significantly ease market access and protect the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors. 
According to the latest report on the future China-US relationship by CCG, as China actively opens its door and creates a better investment environment for US firms in China, the US side should also further facilitate investment environment for Chinese enterprises in the US, in order to boost mutual benefit.

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