The report comes as Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, top economic advisor Larry Kudlow, Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Trump advisor Peter Navarro head to Beijing later this week for the first round of face-to-face talks to try and end the trade war.

Since shortly after announcing his candidacy for office, President Trump has railed against the US-China trade deficit, declaring that it was tantamount to handing billions of dollars to the Chinese every year.

But trade frictions between the US and China go even deeper.

They include industrial robots and semiconductors, an area in which China seeks to challenge the likes of Intel and Samsung.

The EU has also hinted at the prospect of a new trade deal with the US if it is granted a permanent exemption from the steel and aluminum tariffs.

Categories: ZH