"He understands both the national and economic interests that we have, the desire for our companies to access the Chinese market, but also the national security interests that we have, so he obviously wants to do what he can to have a fruitful and constructive relationship with China," Spicer told reporters.
The statement was a reiteration of Trump’s recent letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping, wherein he told the Chinese leader he looked forward to areas of mutual cooperation as well as differences.
Trump has criticized what he calls China’s unfair trade practices and threatened to impose a high blanket tariff on Chinese goods.
Following the US withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, Xi told the World Economic Forum in Davos that China would lead the world in free trade and counter protectionism.
The Chinese Commerce Ministry said last month that Beijing wanted to promote stable and healthy trade relations with the United States to the profit of both economies.