By Stephanie Kelly
Brent crude futures lost 49 cents, or 0.8 percent to $61.61 a barrel by 12:53 p.m. EST (1753 GMT).
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell 65 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $52.07 a barrel.
While Beijing struck an upbeat note, it also expressed anger at a U.S. Navy mission through the disputed South China Sea. This cast a shadow as the two countries try to reach a deal before the March 1 deadline when U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports are scheduled to increase to 25 percent from 10 percent.
Escalating U.S.-China trade tensions have cost both countries billions of dollars and disrupted global trade and business flows, roiling financial markets.
"There's a lot of uncertainty about what's going on with this trade war, whether they're going to get anything done," said Phil Flynn, oil analyst at Price Futures Group in Chicago. "You've got concerns about slowing growth."
Still, oil prices have been buoyed this year by output curbs from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, including Russia, a group known as OPEC+.
The deal, effective from January, aims to cut 1.2 million barrels per day until the end of June to forestall a supply overhang. Suhail Al Mazrouei, the Energy Minister of the United Arab Emirates, said on Monday the oil market should achieve this balance in the first quarter of 2019.
U.S. sanctions on Venezuela, along with older sanctions on fellow OPEC member Iran, have also prevented crude prices from falling further.
The country also wants to double its oil sales to India and is open to barter payment arrangements with the world's third-biggest crude consumer, Venezuelan Oil Minister Manuel Quevedo said on Monday.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)