Trump has previously threatened to terminate the trade deal with China if it doesn't live up to the Phase 1 promise to buy an additional $200 billion worth of US-made goods and services over the next two years, including $40 billion agricultural goods.
"We’re going to have to see what’s going on because of what happened," Trump said at a virtual town hall hosted from Washington, DC's Lincoln Memorial on Sunday. He noted China promised they were "going to buy $250 billion worth of our product. Two hundred and fifty billion. They didn’t buy two cents. They didn’t want to buy from us. They took advantage of our country. Now they have to buy, and if they don’t buy, we’ll terminate the deal. Very simple."
Trump evaded a question on Wednesday about whether he would consider reimposing trade tariffs on China if it's found in violation of the deal.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany later told reporters the US-China relationship is one "of disappointment and frustration."
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that senior administration trade officials were against the idea of punishing tariffs on China in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic if Beijing is found to be abiding by the trade deal. Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have accused China of covering up and withholding key information about the deadly virus, as well as mismanaging the outbreak, causing it to spread to the US and around the globe.
“The US isn’t looking at punitive measures here," United States Deputy National Security Advisor Matthew Pottinger said on Monday at a symposium hosted by the University of Virginia's Miller Center.
“I have every reason to expect that they honor this agreement," US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told Fox Business Network on Monday, adding that failing to honor the agreement would result in “very significant consequences in the relationship and in the global economy as to how people would do business with them."
Reuters reported last week, citing a senior US trade official, that China remained "very, very committed" to upholding the Phase 1 trade deal.
“We will continually assess its implementation of the Phase 1 agreement,” the official said. “We’ve had very good interactions with Chinese (officials) on that, and they are continuing to implement their obligations.”