Why China won't buy Trump's North Korea bluster
China has been irritated at being told repeatedly by Washington to rein in North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, or face USA sanctions on Chinese businesses trading with North Korea, and by the US decision to base an advanced missile defense system in South Korea.
Trump told the Financial Times the U.S.is prepared to act alone if China does not take a tougher stand against North Korea's nuclear program.
"I'm not going to tell you", Trump said when asked to clarify.
It is also unclear what the United States might do on its own to deflect North Korea from the expansion of its nuclear capabilities and development of missiles.
"If they do, that will be very good for China, and if they don't, it won't be good for anyone".
The Trump administration is actually viewed as taking some stances helpful to China's goals, such as withdrawing the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact and, so far, it has not authorized any "freedom of navigation" exercises in the disputed South China Sea waters and airspace Beijing claims as its own.
The blue chip FTSE 100 .FTSE index closed 0.6 percent lower at 7,282.69 points as markets traded lower following news that a coalition of USA states and municipalities have begun legal action against President Donald Trump's administration over energy efficiency standards.
It remains unclear how far Trump will go in translating populist rhetoric into policy that steps up pressure on China, given the risk of a trade war neither country can afford.
United Nations resolutions and unilateral sanctions imposed on North Korea have so far failed to deter it from conducting nuclear and missile tests.
"I've been working on the North Korea problem since 1994", Carter said on ABC.
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Nikki Haley, the USA ambassador to the United Nations, on Sunday said that China needs to do more to push North Korea to stop efforts to develop a nuclear weapon.
Tensions have risen sharply as North Korea has stepped up ballistic missile tests and amid boasts by leader Kim Jong-un that his country was in the final stages of developing an intercontinental ballistic missile.
Also speaking on ABC, he recalled that the United States drew up a "preemptive strike plan" in 1994 to knock out North Korea's Yongbyon reactor, during a confrontation over its nuclear program. "If the USA could really take unilateral action against North Korea, it should have done so earlier, not waited until North Korea developed its nuclear program and missiles to this extent", Vivian Zhan, a politics professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, told The Guardian.
Keane, who is said to be close to Trump, declined the role of secretary of defense offered to him by the president, citing the recent death of his wife.
The Chinese will nod their heads and say the right things in Florida, but they also know a Washington that's distracted and in disarray will prove incapable of effectively pressuring Beijing.
He told the daily that North Korea would rank high on the list of priorities at the summit and uttered dark warnings unless Beijing cooperates.
"We're going to continue to put pressure on China to have action".
Said Professor Jia: "These, and reports about Chinese military modernisation, are probably getting into the heads of the American public, so they get the impression that China is building up its military".
"The market was a little taken aback by Trump's comments recently about the meeting", said Andre Bakhos, managing director at Janlyn Capital in Bernardsville, New Jersey.
"They haven't used that influence, and so it's hard for me to be optimistic with that", he said.
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