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WORLD | 22-11-2018 17:48

Trump says prepared for G20 meeting with China's Xi

'I have been preparing for it all my life,' says US president ahead of crucial meeting on sidelines of next week's event.

US President Donald Trump insisted Thursday he was "very prepared" for a meeting with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping next week at the G20 Leaders Summit in Buenos Aires, and suggested a deal could be reached to end the trade war.

The president will meet Xi on the sidelines of the summit, which is taking place from November 30 to December 1 in Buenos Aires.

"I have been preparing for it all my life," he told journalists at his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, where he gave a lengthy press conference after a Thanksgiving day telephone address to US troops deployed overseas. "I know every ingredient, every stat. I know it better than everybody knows it. My gut is always right."

Beijing and Washington have been locked in a trade war since this summer, with the US imposing punitive tariffs on Chinese goods worth US$250 billion per year. In retaliation, China imposed tariffs on US$110 billion of US goods.

Washington has threatened to toughen measures even further if the issue is not resolved before January.

"China wants to make a deal. If we can make a deal, we will," Trump said.

He also hailed his "great relationship" with Xi.

"I like him a lot. I think he likes me. Probably likes me less now than he did before we did what we're doing," he quipped.

- AFP

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