Trade between Beijing and Washington has nothing to do with the North Korean conflict, a senior Chinese official said on Monday.
Vice Minister of Commerce Qian Keming's statement came in response to criticism from US President Donald Trump over Beijing's lack of support regarding North Korea after the Kim Jong-un regime successfully conducted its second intercontinental ballistic missile test on July 28, reports Efe news.
Qian, while addressing a press conference, said the North Korean nuclear issue and the trade between China and the US belong to different spheres and are not related — hence they should not be discussed in the same breath.
The minister underlined the mutual benefits arising from trade between China and the US, and expressed Beijing's willingness to work with the international community to push for the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.
On Saturday, Trump tweeted: "Our foolish past leaders have allowed them to make hundreds of billions of dollars a year in trade, yet… they do nothing for us with North Korea."
Following the latest missile test, the Chinese government urged Pyongyang to respect the UN Security Council resolutions and called for calm and reducing tensions.
Beijing has continued to urge for talks regarding North Korea, whereas Washington and its allies have stressed on the need to increase sanctions, both unilaterally and through the UN.