DONALD Trump has believes China will resolve its trade dispute with the US “because it is the right thing to do”.

A tweet from the president did not explain the reasoning behind his optimistic outlook on an escalating trade clash between the world’s two biggest economies.

Trump said he and Chinese President Xi Jinping “will always be friends, no matter what happens with our dispute on trade”.

The US bought $500 billion (£350bn) in goods from China last year and is considering tariffs on $150bn (£105bn) of those imports. China, meanwhile, purchased $130bn (£92 bn) from the US.

China has pledged to “counterattack with great strength” if Trump commits to a threat to imposes tariffs on an additional $100bn (£70bn) in Chinese goods – after an earlier announcement which targeted $50bn (£35bn).

Trump’s sudden change in attitude has been typical of his team’s uncertainty on the issue.

Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin said he was “cautiously optimistic” that an agreement could be reached before any tariffs went into place, but he also said “there is the potential of a trade war”.

White House economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, however, said the US is “not in a trade war” and that “China is the problem. Blame China, not Trump”.