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US National Security Adviser O’Brien told media while addressing a security conference in Halifax on Saturday, a preliminary trade agreement with China is still possible by the end of the year but added that the US will continue to closely watch the Hong Kong civil unrest and the South China Sea issue.

Key Quotes (via Reuters):

“We were hoping to have (a phase one) deal done by the end of the year. I still think that’s possible.”  

“At the same time, we’re not going to turn a blind eye to what’s happening in Hong Kong or what’s happening in the South China Sea, or other areas of the world where we’re concerned about China’s activity.”

Hope district elections in Hong Kong would proceed without violence. “That would be a good sign.”

On the Hong Kong human rights bill, he said: “I think the bill passed with a pretty significant majority, so I’m sure that’s something the president is taking into consideration.”  

Markets are likely to see some caution trading amid the impending Hong Kong human rights bill and trade issues.

  • US Pres. Trump: Administration to take ‘good look’ at Hong Kong rights bill
  • China’s Wang: US has already become the world’s biggest destabilising factor