- The Washington Times - Friday, September 20, 2019

President Trump insisted on a “complete” U.S.-China trade deal Friday, saying it’s wonderful that Beijing is buying U.S. farm products but that he won’t settle for half-measures.

“That’s not what I’m looking for. We’re looking for the big deal,” he told reporters at a joint press conference with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. “I’m not looking for a partial deal, I’m looking for a complete deal.”

Mr. Trump said a Chinese trade pact would probably give him a political boost but he’s not setting a November 2020 deadline.

“I don’t think I need it before the election,” Mr. Trump said. “I think people know that we’re doing a great job.”

Mr. Trump said negotiators will try to sort out the U.S.-China trade war in meetings next month. Increasing tariffs between the countries have rattled investors and retailers, though Mr. Trump said his course is the right one.

He insisted, again, that China is facing the brunt of the pain from the tariffs on billions of dollars in goods.

Mr. Morrison supported Mr. Trump’s stance.

He wants to see a U.S.-China deal, but “what is necessary is [that] deals have got to be fair,” the prime minister said. “Deals have got to be good deals, deals have got to be sustainable deals.”

He said Australia has benefited from China’s economic development, though the Chinese must play fair if they want to be in the big leagues.

He also said he isn’t worried about being caught in the crossfire of the trade war, citing nearly three decades of sustained economic growth.

“We’ve diversified our trade base and have been doing that for many years,” he said.

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