Published: Wed, June 20, 2018
Business | By Pearl Harrison

Trump threatens additional tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods

Trump threatens additional tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods

China will fight back firmly with "qualitative" and "quantitative" measures if the United States publishes an additional list of tariffs on Chinese goods, the commerce ministry said, accusing the U.S. of initiating a trade war.

In addition to the second set of tariffs, Trump also threatened to hit China with a third wave - an additional 10% on another $200 billion worth of Chinese goods - if the Beijing rolled out their own wave of tariffs.

"This latest action by China clearly indicates its determination to keep the United States at a permanent and unfair disadvantage, which is reflected in our massive $376 billion trade imbalance in goods", Trump said in a statement.

To respond to Trump's threat to impose tariffs on as much as $250 billion worth of Chinese goods, Beijing would have to find other ways to respond.

In Beijing, China's Commerce Ministry responded swiftly to Trump's latest threat, warning that if the United States imposed fresh tariffs, China would have to adopt "comprehensive measures combining quantity and quality to make a strong countermeasure". Trump's June 15 tariffs came in response to a months-long investigation that documented trade practices from forcing US companies to share trade secrets to subsiding domestic industries which have been widely condemned as unfair.

"China apparently has no intention of changing its unfair practices related to the acquisition of American intellectual property and technology, " Trump said in a statement Monday announcing the new action.

Trump's latest comments came hours after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused China of engaging in "predatory economics".

On Friday, I announced plans for tariffs on $50 billion worth of imports from China. All told, Trump is now threatening to penalize up to $450 billion of Chinese goods - a value representing about 90 percent of Chinese imports previous year.

US and European equity markets looked set to follow Asia into the red.


China bought American goods worth $153.9 billion a year ago, while exports to the United States totaled $429.8 billion, according to customs data.

Beijing has offered to narrow its politically volatile trade surplus with the United States but has resisted changing technology development tactics its leaders see as a path to prosperity and to restoring China's rightful role as a global leader.

A paper published by Canadian think tank the CD Howe Institute suggests that Mr Trump's threats are having an effect on USA manufacturing by using "uncertainty as a new weapon in trade protection".

Pompeo on Monday described US actions as "economic diplomacy, " which, when done right, strengthens national security and worldwide alliances, he added.

Additionally, the president has promised further escalation in his attack on China's alleged theft of intellectual property and unfair trade practices should it respond with more tariffs on United States goods, promising to pursue tariffs on yet another $200bn of Chinese products.

Yet, while Bardole believes the ever-escalating trade war between America and China is bad for everyone involved-including the USA soybean industry and him personally-he gives the president slack on this issue.

"China could target USA firms through tax and regulatory policies", said Citigroup in a report.

But most economists generally say that tariffs are the wrong way to tackle the issue. "The United States will no longer be taken advantage of on trade by China and other countries in the world".

In the separate dispute about steel and aluminium tariffs, he also has to contend with the politically targeted retaliation that other countries such as Mexico, Canada and the European Union have in hand, meant to hit important states in the mid-term elections.

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