The one that I guess most people are interested in is China. We had a great meeting. President Xi. And we’ve known each for as long as I’m President. And many of you were at the event in China a year ago, when — I’ve never seen anything like it. The — it was beautiful. We talked about it; we dinner last night, President Xi and a number of us. And it was something really incredible, in Beijing. The red carpet was rolled out for all of us — for this country, for our country.
And we had a great meeting, and we will be continuing to negotiate. And I promised that, for at least the time being, we’re not going to be lifting tariffs on China. We won’t be adding an additional tremendous amount of — we have, I guess, $350 billion left, which could be taxed or it could be tariffed. And we’re not doing that. We’re going to work with China on where we left off, to see if we can make a deal.
China is going to start — they’re going to be consulting with us, and they’re going to start spending money, even during the negotiation, to our farmers, our great farmers in the Midwest. I call them the “great patriots” because that’s what they are. They’re patriots. And China is going to be buying a tremendous amount of food and agricultural product, and they’re going to start that very soon, almost immediately. We’re going to give them lists of things that we’d like them to buy. Our farmers are going to be a tremendous beneficiary.
With respect to China, basically we agreed today that we were going to continue the negotiation — which I ended a while back — and we’re going to continue the negotiation. We agreed that I would not be putting tariffs on the $325 billion that I would have the ability to put on if I wanted.
One of the things I will allow, however, is — a lot of people are surprised — we send and we sell to Huawei a tremendous amount of product that goes into the various things that they make. And I said that that’s okay, that we will keep selling that product.
And in some cases, we’re the ones that do it and we’re the only ones that do it. We’re the only ones with the technology. What we’ve done in Silicon Valley is incredible actually. And nobody has been able to compete with it. And I’ve agreed — and pretty easily — I’ve agreed to allow them to continue to sell that product so American companies will continue. And they were having a problem. The companies were not exactly happy that they couldn’t sell because they had nothing to do with whatever was potentially happening with respect to Huawei. So I did do that.
We talked about education and students. Somebody was saying it was harder for a Chinese students to come in. And that’s something that if it were — it somebody viewed it that way, I don’t. We want to have Chinese students come and use our great schools, our great universities. They’ve been great students and tremendous assets. But we did discuss it. It was brought up as a point, and I said that will be just like anybody else, just like any other nation.
I get along with a lot of people. I have a tremendous relationship with President Xi. Nobody else would have the deal that we have. We’re getting tens of billions of dollars from China coming in. A lot of things are happening. And despite that, we’re moving along towards something that could be very historic.
And so — but I will — as per your question about President Xi, he’s a brilliant leader, he’s a brilliant man. And you know better than I, he’s probably considered to be one of the great leaders in 200 years, in China. And we just have a very — he’s strong; he’s tough. But he’s good. We have a very good relationship. And I said, you know, “We can’t have it where the United States loses this kind of money for the privilege of building up China. It has to be a fair deal.” And he understands that.
So we’re making a deal with China, or we’re attempting. And if we don’t, we’ll go back into — you know, we have a tremendous ripe field of tremendous money that would be coming into our country. But I have a feeling that over a period of time — and, again, I’m not rushed, and I told him that I want to get the deal right. It’s extremely — I wouldn’t even say complicated, but very intricate.
U.S. companies can sell their equipment to Huawei. I’m talking about equipment where there is no great national emergency problem with it. But the U.S. companies can sell their equipment. So we have a lot of the great companies in, Silicon Valley and based in different parts of the country, that make extremely complex equipment. We’re letting them sell to Huawei.
Our companies were very upset. You know, these companies are great companies. You know all of them. But they weren’t exactly happy with it. But we’re allowing that because that was a national security — we’re allowing them to sell.
But we agreed to leave that until the end. Huawei is a complicated situation. We agreed to leave that — we’re leaving Huawei toward the end. We’re going to see. We’ll see where we go with the trade agreement.
Look what — who’s done what I’ve done? I took ZTE off, if you remember. I was the one; I did that. That was a personal deal. And then President Xi called me. And he asked me for a personal favor, which I considered to be very important. He’s a leader of a major country. And it was very important to him, having to do with where the employees are located and his relationship to that area. And it was 85,000 employees. And they were almost out of business. And he agreed to pay $1.2 billion penalty and some other things, including a board change and including some management changes, et cetera. ZTE, which is a — you know, much smaller than Huawei, but it’s very big. And they paid us a billion-two. $1.2 billion.
I think we’re going to be strategic partners. I think we can help each other. I think, in the end, we can — if the right deal is structured, we can be great for each other.
If China would open up — you’re opening up a tremendous — you know, the largest market in the world. And, right now, China is not open to the United States, but we’re open to China. That should have never really been allowed to happen.
Source: the White House