The summit between US president Donald Trump and Chinese president Xi Jinping will be pushed back beyond the planned end of March date in order to finalise negotiations.
No date has yet been agreed but it had originally been pencilled in for 27 March or 28 March in Mar-a-Lago following Xi's planned trip to Europe.
It was revealed on Friday by US ambassador to China Terry Branstad that those plans are now off and there are no dates set for a summit, but he did insist a deal was close to being completed.
“I am more hopeful now than I have been in a long time that we will see a significant trade agreement reached addressing some of these fundamental issues that have not be addressed for a long, long time,” Branstad said in an interview with Bloomberg.
The reason for the delay to the meeting is to have an agreement in place and avoid an embarrassing stand-off.
China is hoping to avoid a situation such as the US summit with North Korea, where Trump opted to walk out of a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un without an agreement in the summit in Vietnam last month.
Both parties would prefer any meeting to be a matter of a formality rather than being a key stage of the negotiations.