Washington - US President Donald Trump warned on Thursday there is "a lot more" he could do to hurt China's economy.
Trump accuses Beijing of engaging in unfair trade practices, including forced technology transfers and intellectual property theft. He has imposed tariffs on an estimated half of all Chinese goods imported to the US, worth some 250 million dollars.
Lowered manufacturing output reported at the end of September in China indicates that the tariffs may be starting to bite Beijing.
"Their economy has gone down very substantially and I have a lot more to do if I want to do it," Trump said in an interview with Fox News.
"I don't want to do it, but they have to come to the table," he continued.
An opportunity for talks between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping could come during the Group of 20 leaders' summit in Buenos Aires in late November, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The newspaper said the White House is laying the groundwork for the meeting, saying Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow want to de-escalate the trade fight.
"They lived too well for too long," Trump said of the Chinese during his Fox News interview. "And frankly, I guess, they think that the Americans are stupid people. Americans are not stupid people."
However, he praised Beijing for being "quite good" when it comes to helping Washington in its effort to denuclearize North Korea.
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