Donald Trump has suggested he might be willing to make embattled Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei part of trade talks with China.
His administration last week put Huawei, which it has called a threat to national security, on a blacklist that effectively barred US firms from selling the Chinese company computer chips and other components without government approval.
The move could cripple Huawei, the world’s largest manufacturer of networking gear and second-biggest smartphone maker.
“I can imagine Huawei being included in some form of a trade deal,” Mr Trump told reporters.
He offered no details but said any arrangement “would look very good for us, I can tell you that”.
It came as Mr Trump rolled out another 16 billion dollars (£12 billion) in aid for farmers hurt by his trade policies, and financial markets shook on the growing realisation that the US and China are far from settling a bitter, year-long trade dispute.
US agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue said the first of three payments is likely to be made in July or August and suggested the US and China are unlikely to have settled their differences by then.
.@POTUS has great affection for America’s farmers and he knows they are bearing the brunt of these trade disputes. Here is our program to support farmers while @POTUS fights to get better trade deals with China and other nations around the world: https://t.co/B0uD0xh5Zr— Sec. Sonny Perdue (@SecretarySonny) May 23, 2019
“The package we’re announcing today ensures that farmers do not bear the brunt of unfair retaliatory tariffs imposed by China and other trading partners,” Mr Perdue said.
The latest bailout comes on top of 11 billion dollars (£8 billion) in aid Mr Trump provided farmers last year.
“We will ensure our farmers get the relief they need and very, very quickly,” he said.
Seeking to reduce America’s trade deficit with the rest of the world and with China in particular, he has imposed import taxes on foreign steel, aluminium, solar panels and dishwashers and on thousands of Chinese products.
UStrading partners have lashed back with retaliatory tariffs of their own, focusing on US agricultural products in a direct shot at the American heartland, where support for Mr Trump runs high.
- Press Association