China warned Sunday after another round of talks on a sprawling trade dispute with Washington that any deals they produce "will not take effect" if President Donald Trump's threatened tariff hike on Chinese goods goes ahead.
U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, left, shakes hands with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He as they pose for photographers after their meeting at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, Sunday, Jun 3, 2018.
But at the same time, it warned that the outcome of the talks should be "based on the prerequisite that the two parties meet each other halfway and will not engage in a trade war".
China has warned that all trade talks between Beijing and Washington will be void if the United States sets up trade sanctions.
"The attitude of the Chinese side remains consistent", it said.
China, it said, was willing to increase its quota of imports as it was part of the country's national strategy.
The Chinese statement said the two sides made "positive and concrete progress", but neither side released details.
Instead, the short statement referred to last month's "consensus" reached in Washington. The U-S has threatened to implement tariffs on 50 billion dollars worth of Chinese imports.
Neither country has implemented the tariffs yet and continued discussions to find a way out of the impasse.More news: Kanye West's New Album 'Ye' Is Here
Liu, a Harvard-trained economist who is a trusted confidant of Chinese President Xi Jinping, is China's chief negotiator in the trade dispute. Washington's positions in the trade talks with Beijing have shifted as Trump's team of hardliners and more mainstream advisors compete to push their views.
Tensions temporarily eased on May 19 after China promised to "significantly increase" its purchases of USA farm, energy and other products.
The visit from the large United States delegation, with members from several executive branch agencies, came as fears of an all-out global trade war intensified after the European Union, Canada and Mexico drew up retaliatory measures to Washington's stinging steel and aluminium tariffs that went into effect on Friday.
"Tariffs and expanding exports - the United States can't have both", it said. But the truce appeared to end with this week's announcement Washington was going ahead with tariff increases on technology goods and would also impose curbs on Chinese investment and purchases of United States hi-tech exports.
But US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin denied that the US had abandoned leadership in the global economy and said he had passed on the other countries' strong feelings to Mr Trump.
"We regret that our common work together at the level of the G7 has been put at risk by the decisions taken by the American administration on trade and on tariffs", he said.
The U.S. team had also wanted to secure greater intellectual property protection and an end to Chinese subsidies that have contributed to overproduction of steel and aluminum.
Trade analysts feared that decision might alienate allies who share complaints about Chinese technology policy and a flood of low-cost steel, aluminum and other exports they say are the result of improper subsidies and hurt foreign competitors.