United States President Donald Trump will sign an executive memorandum on Monday authorizing the U.S. trade representative to determine whether to investigate China’s intellectual property and trade or not.
Trump plans to direct U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to launch an investigation into Chinese violations of the U.S. trade, including forced intellectual property transfers and patent thefts, CNN quoted senior administration officials as saying.
Trump informed Chinese President Xi Jinping during a phone call on Friday night of the upcoming memorandum, a senior administration official told CNN Friday.
Saturday that Trump spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping about the upcoming memo during a phone call Friday.
While administration officials said Saturday that it’s too early to discuss specific actions against China, such an investigation could eventually pave the way for Trump to impose tariffs on Chinese goods.
Trump is expected to return to Washington from his golf club in Bedminster, N.J. on Monday to sign the memo.
Trump’s call with Xi and his plans to open the broad trade investigation come against the backdrop of hightened tensions between U.S. and North Korea over Kim Jong -Un’s ordering intercontinental ballistic missiles and increasing frustration in the White House that China has not done more to rein in Pyongyang.Trump has been trying for months to get China to exert more pressure on North Korea, but has recently expressed frustration with the lack of progress but praised China’s support for expanded U.N. sanctions against North Korea