As the U.S. and China continue to wage their trade war, President Trump claimed that the U.S. is in a "very strong" position. Although China on Monday answered the Trump administration's tariff hike on Chinese imports last week with its own round of tariffs on hundreds of U.S. goods, Mr. Trump appeared optimistic that a trade deal could still be struck between the two countries. He told reporters that he will be meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the upcoming G20 summit of world leaders in Japan.
"Maybe something will happen," Mr. Trump told reporters Monday. He predicted it would be a "very fruitful meeting."
He added, "We are taking in tens of billions of dollars" in tariffs and said the U.S. has been "taken advantage of on all of our trade deals practically." The cost of those tariffs, however, is being absorbed by American businesses and consumers.
Mr. Trump noted that the administration still reserves the right to impose additional tariffs on the remaining $325 billion worth of Chinese goods but has not made a final decision.
Meanwhile, the president said that out of the billions that are coming into U.S. coffers from the tariffs, a "small portion" of that will go to farmers who have been feeling the negative effects of the escalating trade tensions. "No country could get in the way of our farmers," he claimed.
[We'll] take about $15 billion and do something for our farmers," he said. "Farmers will be very happy. We do much less business with China than they do with us."
The president's remarks came during an Oval Office meeting with controversial Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who has been criticized for anti-Semitic and xenophobic comments throughout his time in office. During their meeting, the president acknowledged Orban's visit "probably might be a little controversial, but that's ok."
Mr. Trump also said that he would be be meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit.
Despite ongoing concerns over Mr. Trump's warm reception of Putin, amid the continuing investigations into Russia's meddling in the U.S. election process, the president defended his relationship with the leader, saying that the U.S. has been strong against Russia, and that it "makes sense to get along with Russia."