Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the U.S. and China are getting much closer to a trade deal than people realize. He’s also optimistic that progress will be made when Presidents Trump and Xi meet face-to-face this weekend at the G-20 in Osaka, Japan.
“We’re about 90 percent of the way there and I think there’s a definite path forward to completing this,” Mnuchin told CNBC. Mnuchin also says he’s confident that Trump and Xi will make additional progress in the stalled trade talks. “The message we want to hear is that they want to come back to the table and continue,” he said. “I think there’s a good outcome for their economy and the U.S. economy to get balanced trade and continue to build on the relationship between the two countries.”
What he didn’t provide to CNBC was additional details on what the final 10 percent of the agreement entails, or what some of the more important sticking points still are. The outcome of Saturday’s meeting is very important to the global economy and financial markets, which have been shaken up by the 1.5-year trade dispute between the economic giants. A survey of investors says they don’t expect a deal this weekend, but they don’t expect any new tariffs either.