President Donald Trump defended the agreement between the U.S. and China to put the trade war “on hold” and to greatly reduce the bilateral trade imbalance, the Financial Times reports, as U.S. lawmakers criticised the focus on a quick deal rather than addressing structural change.
Referring to China’s pledge to buy more American agricultural produce, Trump wrote on Twitter: “Under our potential deal with China, they will purchase from our Great American Farmers practically as much as our Farmers can produce.”
“Fair Trade, plus, with China will happen!” he added.
Florida senator Marco Rubio, who recently has been active in pushing for a tougher stance on China, responded: “If we are desperate for a deal #China is going to kill us in negotiations.”
Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer also said on Monday that Trump must “not sell out for a temporary purchase of goods without fixing the real issue: stealing our [intellectual property], which costs us millions of jobs long-term.”
This was echoed by U.S. Trade Representative and key member of Trump’s China team Robert Lighthizer, who said, “the far more important issues revolve around forced technology transfers, cyber theft and the protection of our innovation.”