April 22 (UPI) — U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is considering a trip to China to ease trade tensions between the two nations.
Mnuchin said as much during a news conference Saturday, telling reporters “a trip is under consideration,” according to CNN. He added that he is “cautiously optimistic” the two countries will work out a new trade agreement.
An unnamed spokesman for the Chinese Commerce Ministry said in a statement obtained by the Wall Street Journal that his country “welcomes this” news of Mnuchin’s possible trip.
“China has received a message from the US about its willingness to hold bilateral trade talks in Beijing,” the ministry said.
U.S. President Donald Trump sparked burgeoning disagreement between the U.S. and China when he decided in late March to impose tariffs on China, possibly worth tens of billions of dollars.
China retaliated with tariffs of its own on U.S. imports, particularly from the agriculture and metal industries.