May 9 (UPI) -- A team of Chinese negotiators, including one of the country's top economic officials, will visit the White House on Thursday to begin working out a deal to end the ongoing trade war between Beijing and the United States.
Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and a delegation of negotiators will sit down with U.S. officials in hopes of reaching a deal that would put an end to months of tensions and tariffs being lobbed between the two countries.
Liu and his delegation will engage in discussions Thursday and Friday to end the standoff. It will be the 11th round of negotiations aimed at finding a solution.
Thursday's meeting comes amid plans by the United States to increase tariffs Friday on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent -- after U.S. officials said Chinese negotiators attempted to renegotiate their proposed deal during meetings in Beijing last week.
In addition to Friday's planned tariff hike, President Donald Trump also pledged new 25 percent tariffs "shortly" for $325 billion worth of more Chinese goods.
Speaking in Florida late Wednesday, Trump hinted at the talks and said China has violated terms of the ongoing negotiations.
"The [Chinese] vice premier tomorrow is flying in -- good man -- but they broke the deal. They can't do that, so they'll be paying," he told a crowd of supporters in Panama City Beach, Fla.
The president added that the United States "won't back down until China stops cheating our workers and stealing our jobs."
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the planned hike came after U.S. negotiators sensed an "erosion of commitments" by China. He added, however, that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the United States would reconsider the hike if the new negotiations go well.
Trump added uncertainty to the trade dispute on Twitter Wednesday, stating he's willing to walk away from a settlement and would not allow China to "continue to rip off" the United States.
"I am very happy with over $100 Billion a year in Tariffs filling U.S. coffers ... great for U.S., not good for China!" he wrote.
The Chinese Commerce Ministry responded to the U.S. plans by saying it would retaliate with its own tariffs, if necessary -- and said Thursday it's prepared for any outcome.
"The escalation of trade friction is not in the interests of the people of the two countries and the people of the world," the ministry said. "The Chinese side deeply regrets that if the U.S. tariff measures are implemented, China will have to take necessary countermeasures."
Friday's tariff hike was originally scheduled to take place on March 1, but Trump delayed the measure in February citing "substantial progress" in trade negotiations at the time.
Wednesday, Trump cited U.S. economist Peter Morici in a tweet.
"The reality is, with the Tariffs, the economy has grown more rapidly in the United States and much more slowly in China," Morici, the former chief economist at the U.S. International Trade Commission, said.
The trade tensions with China date back as far as the beginning of Trump's presidency, but ramped up in March 2018 when Trump first imposed tariffs for $60 billion worth of Chinese goods, citing "tremendous intellectual property theft."
"We want reciprocal, a mirror," Trump said then. "If they charge us we charge them the same thing. That's the way it's gotta be."
The following months saw tit-for-tat escalations between the two countries and the simmering tensions dragged down the U.S. stock markets, which last year experienced their worst annual loss in a decade.
Positive progress from negations at the end of last year and the start of this year put Wall Street back on a positive trajectory, but markets stumbled again this week after talks soured and the United States threatened more tariffs.