U.S. President Donald Trump said he talked with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday, especially about ongoing trade disputes between the world's two biggest economies.
Trump and Xi, in several reciprocal actions, have in recent months imposed higher tariffs on tens of billions of dollars of exports moving between the two countries, increasing tensions between Washington and Beijing.
But Trump described the call between the two leaders as "a long and very good conversation" and said "discussions are moving along nicely." He said further meetings with Xi are being scheduled for the G-20 summit of the world's biggest economies, set for Nov. 30 in Buenos Aires, the first ever such summit in South America.
Trump made no mention of whether the two leaders talked about the U.S. indictment unveiled Thursday of two companies based in China and Taiwan accusing them of stealing trade secrets from a U.S. semiconductor company, Micron Technology Inc. It was the fourth such case since September alleging Chinese espionage on U.S. economic interests.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions told reporters that Chinese espionage has been "increasing rapidly," demanding that "cheating must stop."
FBI director Christopher Wray said the U.S. has filed a civil lawsuit seeking to prevent the two indicted companies, Taiwan-based United Microelectronics Corp. and China's state-owned Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit, from exporting any products created using U.S. trade secrets and blocking the further transfer of trade secrets.
"No country presents a broader, more severe threat to our ideas, our innovation, and our economic security than China," Wray said.
Trump said he also talked with Xi about "many subjects," including a "good discussion" on North Korea, where Trump is trying to negotiate an end to Pyongyang's nuclear weapons program.