(Adds details on NAFTA, background on China)
NEW YORK, Oct 25 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will seek "tangible" agreements on trade with China when he visits the country next month, but results on key issues such as market access may take longer, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Wednesday.
Ross said the United States is seeking "immediate" results, like the deals American companies GE and Boeing Co struck in Saudi Arabia in May, as "a sign of good faith."
But, speaking at the Paley International Council Summit in New York, Ross said questions on market access, intellectual property rights and tariffs are more complex and will take a longer time to negotiate.
Trump administration efforts on trade continue on multiple fronts, with U.S. negotiators grappling with Canada and Mexico on updating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Trump will head to Asia from Nov. 3 to 14 to visit Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines for talks that will include discussions on trade.
Ross on Wednesday described Chinese President Xi Jinping as a "Mao-like" figure after a week-long Communist Party conclave after which the country unveiled on Wednesday a new leadership line-up without naming a clear successor.
The Trump administration is seeking agreements with China on market access, respect for intellectual property rights and to resolve what he said is an imbalance in tariffs on automobiles, among other issues, according to Ross.
Despite Trump's fierce criticism of China's trade practices during the presidential campaign, he has mostly held off on any major trade action while his administration works with Beijing on issues including conflict with North Korea.
On NAFTA, Ross said "we're just now getting to the really hard issues," and said talks would likely continue past an initial year-end deadline, to March. He did not outline which issues were sticking points.
Trump, who blamed NAFTA for shifting U.S. manufacturing jobs to Mexico during his election campaign last year, has repeatedly vowed to scrap the treaty unless it can be renegotiated on terms more favorable to the United States. (Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and James Dalgleish)