© Reuters. Trump leads an immigration discussion at the White House in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that the United States was doing well in trade talks with China.

“I like where we are right now,” Trump said in response to a question about trade negotiations with China by reporters at a White House event.

Trump has vowed to increase tariffs to 25 percent from 10 percent on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports on March 2 unless China takes steps to protect U.S. intellectual property, end policies that force American companies to turn over technology to a Chinese partner, allow more market access for U.S. businesses and reduce other non-tariff barriers to American products.

China “very much wants to make a deal,” Trump said.

“We’ll see what happens. But we’re doing very well in our negotiations with China,” he said.

China has repeatedly played down complaints about intellectual property abuses, and has rejected accusations that foreign companies face forced technology transfers.

Earlier on Wednesday, White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said he believed the United States and China could reach a trade deal by March 1.

Companies in both countries are feeling pain from the effects of U.S. tariffs and retaliation from China, which are starting to mount.

Apple Inc (O:) earlier this month rattled global markets by cutting its sales outlook, blaming weak demand in China.

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2019-01-23