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With another nuclear summit looming between Kim and US President Donald Trump, a meeting between President Xi Jinping and the North Korean leader was inevitable, according to analysts.

Experts think Kim's China trip was meant to discuss strategies with his closest ally ahead of a possible summit with Trump, adding that it also appears aimed at strengthening the North's negotiating leverage by demonstrating its strong ties with Beijing.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang, asked during a daily briefing whether there was a connection between Kim's visit and the possibility of another meeting between Kim and Trump, said China believed contact between the United States and North Korea was important.

South Korea's Ambassador to the USA says he is hopeful that a second meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will take place.

Xi told Kim North Korea's reasonable demands must be resolved, KCNA said. "Judging from the delegation lineup, the mission appears to place emphasis on North Korea's continuing diplomatic outreach and nuclear and security issues", Aoki said.

Kim chose China for his maiden official trip overseas past year before holding meetings with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Trump.

"It's no secret China has always wanted to be a part of this talk", said James Kim, director at the the Asan Institute for Policy Studies in South Korea's capital, Seoul.

Tuesday was Kim's birthday but there was no word of any official celebration.

While North Korea hasn't conducted any test launches or detonations in more than a year, it has displayed no real intention of abandoning the programs that are seen as guaranteeing the government's survival.

But Chinese officials also likely want to impress on Kim - who has so far pursued only limited reforms to his statist economy - the benefits the giant Communist country has enjoyed in its transformation from impoverished nation to economic powerhouse.

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That effort is created to squeeze Senate Republicans, some of whom are growing increasingly anxious about the extended shutdown. Speaking on CNN's "State of the Union", Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff called the idea a "nonstarter".

As Kim's armored train pulled into Beijing Railway Station on Tuesday, a few blocks away a USA trade delegation was hammering out differences with their Chinese counterparts in an effort to end the trade war between the two countries.

The North Korean leader visited China at Xi's invitation for the fourth time in less than a year.

Mr Moon said North Korea should take more concrete steps, such as abandoning its intercontinental and intermediate-range ballistic missiles and dismantling weapons production lines and other nuclear complexes, to secure U.S. concessions such as sanctions relief.

The schedule and route this time was similar to Kim's first trip to Beijing by train last March.

China is Kim Jong-un' major supporter and a principal trade collaborator.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves from his train before it departs from Pyongyang to make the trip to Beijing, China, Jan. 7, 2019.

Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department has refrained from commenting on the meeting, which comes as a second summit between Kim and Trump is materializing.

Xi strongly supported Kim's meeting with Trump and hoped the two will find common ground, adding that China is ready to play a "positive" and "constructive" role in the process. -China negotiations were extended another day to Wednesday.

But Hua said Kim's visit would have a "limited" effect on the trade negotiations.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, in his New Year's press conference on Thursday, claimed Japanese politicians are politicizing history issues between the two countries.