Beijing is worried that Trump may be leaving the table as he did with North Korea


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By Eamon Javers, CNBC

After last week's fumble atomic summit in Vietnam, Beijing is worried that President Donald Trump could walk away from the negotiating table.

Core negotiations between Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un were cut shortly after two sides failed to reach agreement. The collapse of the Hanoi Summit came as a surprise, as many experts had predicted that both leaders would try to reach an agreement on minor things.

President Donald Trump moves as he and Chinese President Xi Jinping join together after their Mar-a-Lago meetings on April 7, 2017 in Palm Beach, Fla.Alex Brandon / AP file

The diplomatic snafu led Chinese officials to become worried. Trump could do the same in trade negotiations, a senior CNBC officials said Friday.

"The Chinese saw him go away from North Korea, and they are worried that he will leave China," said the official. "You will not send Xi to Mar-a-Lago and get Trump go away. It would be a diplomatic disaster."

China complained that Trump walked away from smaller trade deals, they believed they had negotiated with Trade Minister Wilbur Ross, and separately with Finance Minister Steve Mnuchin, said diplomatic sources of NBC News.

The official said a meeting between China's Xi Jinping and Trump is still a way out, as the two to three weeks of preparations for the summit have not yet started. In order to ensure that such a summit would not follow the same fallout as the nuclear negotiations in Hanoi, the official Beijing and Washington said through "line-by-line negotiations".

"What they don't want is to send their guy here and POTUS says," No, I'm from here, look at the 9th hole, "the official said.

Earlier Friday there were reports that a meeting between the two leaders at Mar-a-Lago was canceled. The White House said nothing was officially planned or canceled.

Andrea Mitchell contributed.