President Donald Trump on Thursday renewed his threat to cut ties with China, a day after U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told Congress he did not see decoupling the U.S. and Chinese economies as a viable option, Trend reports citing Reuters.
“It was not Ambassador Lighthizer’s fault (yesterday in Committee) in that perhaps I didn’t make myself clear, but the U.S. certainly does maintain a policy option, under various conditions, of a complete decoupling from China,” Trump said on Twitter.
The world’s two largest economies have been at loggerheads over the handling of the coronavirus pandemic and China’s move to impose security legislation on Hong Kong, among multiple points of friction that have worsened this year.
Trump last month signaled a further deterioration in the relationship, saying he had no interest in speaking to President Xi Jinping right now and suggesting he could even cut ties with the world’s second-largest economy.
Lighthizer, asked about U.S.-China ties during a hearing of the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday, said the issue of decoupling was “a complicated one.”
“Do I think that you can sit down and decouple the United States economy from the Chinese economy?” he said. “No, I think that was a policy option years ago. I don’t think it’s a … reasonable policy option at this point.”
His office had no immediate comment on Trump’s tweet.