Chinese official says 'consensus steadily increasing' in U.S. trade talks

A Chinese national flag is seen at a port in Beihai, Guangxi province, China June 17, 2017. Picture taken June 17, 2017. REUTERS/Stringer

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Chinese and U.S. officials negotiating easing trade tensions between the world’s two biggest economies were making progress on Friday but differences remain, a Chinese official told reporters on the sidelines of the G20 summit.

“Consensus is steadily increasing,” said Wang Xiaolong, the director general of the Foreign Ministry’s department of international economic affairs.

“There are also differences,” Wang added.

A White House official, asked whether the U.S. agreed with the Chinese official’s assessment, simply referred to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer’s earlier comments to reporters.

Lighthizer said he would be surprised if Saturday’s dinner between Trump and Xi “wasn’t a success.”

Reporting by Michael Martina, writing by Cassandra Garrison