Trump looked on course for an easy win in Beijing when he stormed into a 4-1 lead with the help of a total clearance of 122 in the second frame.
However, White hit back with a century of his own in the sixth frame and took the next as well after an initial break of 62 which Trump looked set to wipe out until crucially missing the final blue.
White gratefully potted the blue and pink to keep the match alive, but Trump had the final word with a break of 73 in the eighth frame to seal a 5-3 success.
Elsewhere, local favourite Ding Junhui recovered from 4-0 down to scrape past England's Ben Woollaston 5-4 and delight the home crowd.
Woollaston looked certain for a place in the last 16 until Ding made the most of the mid-session interval to regain his composure, the Chinese star reeling off the next five frames and finishing the match in style with a break of 111.
Former world champion Graeme Dott had an easier time in beating Mark King 5-2, while the in-form Stephen Lee beat Tom Ford 5-1.
In the earlier session, last year's beaten finalist Mark Selby eased into the last 16 with a 5-0 whitewash of local hopeful Li Hang.
Li had ousted former world champions Ken Doherty and Graeme Dott in reaching the second round last year but third seed Selby quickly ensured there would be no repeat.
The Leicester cueman raced into a 4-0 lead following a clearance of 139 before clinching the most routine of first-round successes.
Former champion Stephen Maguire was similarly untroubled as he cast aside Barry Hawkins 5-1.
Rory McLeod set up a first-round meeting with world champion John Higgins after he breezed to a 5-0 win over Zhou Yuelong as the final two wildcard matches were played on Tuesday.
Jin Long was the last to clinch his place in the main draw with a 5-4 victory over Fergal O'Brien.
Jin had trailed 53-0 in the deciding frame but battled back to book a meeting with three-time winner Mark Williams on Wednesday.