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U.S. ‘not sincere’ about wanting more trade talks with China: media

BEIJING (Reuters) – The United States is not sincere about wanting to resume trade talks with China and has damaged the atmosphere for negotiations with its recent moves, a state media social media account said.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Wednesday he will likely travel to Beijing soon to continue negotiations with Chinese counterparts as the worldÔÇÖs two biggest economies try to salvage talks aimed at ending their months-long trade war.

But ChinaÔÇÖs Commerce Ministry said on Thursday it had no information on any plans for a U.S. trade delegation visit. China has also been infuriated by the Trump administration hitting Chinese telecoms giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd with severe sanctions this week.

Without sincerity there was no point in coming for talks and nothing to talk about, Taoran Notes, a WeChat account run by the Economic Daily, said in a post late on Thursday that was re-posted by the ruling Communist PartyÔÇÖs official PeopleÔÇÖs Daily.

ÔÇ£The U.S. side has been saying it wants to talk, and at the same time has kept up with its little tricks, damaging the atmosphere for talks,ÔÇØ it said.

ÔÇ£There canÔÇÖt be seen any substantive negotiating sincerity from the United States. Conversely, methods of extreme pressure are spreading,ÔÇØ the post added.

ÔÇ£If the U.S. side ignores the opinions of the Chinese people, I am afraid that it will no longer receive an effective response from China.ÔÇØ

The post noted that the United States is talking again about coming back to the negotiating table and about a meeting of the two countriesÔÇÖ leaders at the G20 Summit in Osaka next month, it said.

ÔÇ£From my perspective, if there is no new substantive action taken by the United States (to address Chinese concerns), then even if they come to talk it will be fruitless.ÔÇØ

China might as well stop the talks completely and return to ÔÇ£our normal working routine: countering with retaliatory measures while concentrating on taking care of our own businessÔÇØ, it added.

Reporting by Ben Blanchard and Yawen Chen; Editing by Kim Coghill

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