Trump: Hong Kong, Human Rights Are Part of China Trade Talks

By Emel Akan

DAVOS, Switzerland—President Donald Trump said China’s human rights record and the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong are part of phase two trade discussions with China, in response to a question from The Epoch Times on Jan. 22.

At a press conference in the Swiss Alpine town of Davos on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum, Trump said “we would like to see we can do something” about the issues in China and Hong Kong.

“We are discussing that already,” he told reporters.

“We’re doing a trade deal, and it’s a very big deal. Phase one is done, phase two is being discussed. We are discussing aspects of” human rights as well, he added.

The United States and China signed last week an initial trade deal, making an important breakthrough in the nearly 2-year-old trade conflict.

As part of the deal, Beijing has committed to buying $200 billion worth of additional American goods and services over the next two years, including $40 billion to $50 billion of agricultural goods each year.

“Those are numbers nobody’s ever heard of before. And that number can grow with time, it’s going to grow substantially, I predict,” Trump said at the press conference.

“Phase one turned out to be much bigger than we anticipated,” he added.

Included in the deal are other commitments by Beijing such as protection of intellectual property, ending technology transfers, transparency on foreign exchange practices, and opening China’s financial services markets to U.S. companies.

Trump earlier promised an end to punitive tariffs on China after the completion of the phase two deal, negotiations on which is expected to start soon.

Trump did not indicate any timetable or deadline for the next phase of talks.

Speaking at the press conference White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow said China trade deal along with the newly passed U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement is “going to add a lot of growth this year and the years ahead.”

From The Epoch Times