As the G-20 meeting in Hamburg between Trump and Xi draws nearer, the US president appears eager to continue antagonizing his Chinese peer.
On his way to Warsaw this morning, where he will stay briefly ahead of the G20 summit in Hamburg which begins on Friday, Trump tweeted his displeasure at US trade deals which had been signed before his tenure: “The United States made some of the worst Trade Deals in world history. Why should we continue these deals with countries that do not help us?”
Initially it was not exactly clear from that tweet alone which trade deals he has in mind, although Nafta has been at the forefront of many minds inside and outside the White House, while the precarious trade relationship between the US and China is well-known.
The United States made some of the worst Trade Deals in world history.Why should we continue these deals with countries that do not help us?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2017
Conveniently, in a subsequent tweet Trump did hint at the source of his displeasure in a following tweet, in which the President made it clear who he was referring to: "Trade between China and North Korea grew almost 40% in the first quarter. So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!"
Trade between China and North Korea grew almost 40% in the first quarter. So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2017
A chart showing N. Korea's reliance on Chinese trade is shown below.
North Korea claimed earlier this week it launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). As reported on Sunday, Pyongyang claimed the long-range weapon could "reach anywhere in the world."
Trump after the test said he hoped China would "put a heavy move" on North Korea and "end this nonsense once and for all!"
Trump has repeatedly called on China to help curtail the North Korean regime's missile tests and has threatened unilateral action as the launches have gone unabated. The president last month tweeted that China has tried to help the U.S. solve increased tensions with North Korea, but "it has not worked out."
As Citi points out, "this does not bode well for the G20 Summit which begins this Friday and the bilateral meeting between China and the US on the sidelines. North Korea is back in focus after the country tested an ICBM missile on Tuesday which US Secretary of State Tillerson said represented "a new escalation of the threat."