President Donald Trump said this week he doesn't fault China for trade practices that have focused on benefiting its citizens at the expense of the United States.
His remarks followed two hours of talks with Chinese president Xi Jinping inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, CNN reports.
"I don't blame China," Trump said to applause. "After all, who can blame a country for being able to take advantage of another country for benefit of their citizens? I give China credit."
The remarks marked a change from comments Trump made on the campaign trail where he lambasted China for one-sided trade practices. At that time, Trump accused China of "raping" the U.S. economy and labeled China a currency manipulator, an accusation he later walked back.