Trump and China's Xi grin ahead of tricky Florida talks

Donald Trump, meeting Xi Jingping for the first time, has been highly critical of China. Credit: AP

US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, have delivered broad smiles ahead of their high-pressured summit talks.

The leaders of the world's two biggest economies were seen shaking hands at the president's Mar-a-Lago retreat in Palm Beach, Florida.

The presidents posed alongside first lady Melania Trump and Chinese first lady Peng Liyuan. Credit: AP

The pair then formally posed with their wives, Melania Trump and Peng Liyuan, on the steps before traditional sit-down shots inside.

The couples will dine together to begin an overnight summit that will include a working lunch on Friday where the tone could become far less cordial.

The leaders smiled ahead of what is expected to be combative summit talks. Credit: AP

Mr Trump last week tweeted that the summit would be "a very difficult one", with North Korea's missile tests, Chinese tensions with Taiwan and trade issues on what could become a combative agenda.