Cannot allow trade deficit with China to continue: Trump

President Donald Trump has said US' massive trade deficit with China cannot be allowed to continue, a day after the officials from both countries concluded their latest round of negotiations on trade issues.

The US and China have been locked in an escalating trade spat since early 2018, raising import tariffs on each other's goods.

Last year, Trump imposed tariff hikes of up to 25 per cent on USD 250 billion of Chinese goods. The move prompted China to increase tariffs on USD 110 billion of American goods.

Trump, who has been accusing China of indulging in unfair trade practices contributing to the huge trade deficit amounting to USD 375 billion, recently said the trade talks with Beijing were going on 'very well'.

Trump met a high-powered Chinese delegation led by its Vice Premier Liu Hu in his Oval Office on Thursday during which he said that the two countries had made significant progress, but nothing is final till he personally seals the deal with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

"If we make the deal with China, you're talking about, it'll be a different world for us. We lost USD 500 billion a year with China, for many years. We're not going to do that anymore," Trump told reporters at the White House on Friday.

After his meeting with Xi in Argentina on December 1, the two countries agreed to pause their trade war for 90 days and arrive at a trade deal by March 1. Trump on Friday threatened to go ahead with his planned slapping of additional tariffs on Chinese imports if the deal is not reached by March 1.

"Our relationship with China is extraordinary. My relationship with President Xi is better, I guarantee, than any relationship of a President and a President. It's not even close. But it can't go on this way. We can't allow this to happen," he said.

Trump is excepted to brief the nation in his State of the Union Address on February 5.

At the same time, the president praised China for its decision to import additional agricultural products.

(Agencies)