Published: Thu, June 21, 2018
Money | By Wilma Wheeler

Trump Threatens China With Fresh Tariffs On $200 Billion Of Imports

Trump Threatens China With Fresh Tariffs On $200 Billion Of Imports

The top White House trade adviser, Peter Navarro, says Beijing "may have underestimated the resolve of President Donald J. Trump" by refusing to meet USA demands on trade and by threatening to retaliate against American trade sanctions.

"This is unacceptable", Trump said.

The move quickly drew praise from former Trump senior adviser Steve Bannon, who told The Associated Press: "President Trump told China and the world tonight that America will not back down when it comes to economic aggression". "China has been taking out $500 billion a year out of our country and rebuilding China".

"If China increases its tariffs yet again, we will meet that action by pursuing additional tariffs on another Dollars 200 billion of goods".

If the United States publishes a new list of tariffs, Beijing will take strong countermeasures to safeguard the interests of China and its people, the ministry said.

China's Commerce Ministry criticised the latest threat of tariffs, saying it was an "act of extreme pressure and blackmail that deviates from the consensus reached by both parties after many negotiations, and is a disappointment to the global community".

If President Donald Trump delivers on threats to slap 25 percent tariffs on imported automobiles and parts, experts say it will cut auto sales and cost jobs. Shanghai stocks plunged to two-year lows. He added that China is a "predatory economic government" that is "long overdue in being tackled, " matters that include IP theft and Chinese steel and aluminum flooding the USA market. Boeing dropped 3% and construction and mining equipment maker Caterpillar shed 2.7%.

The Business Roundtable, representing companies with more than $7 trillion in annual revenue, said the administration's feud with China "will only make it harder to achieve a fair and level playing field for American companies to compete in China".

Washington and Beijing appeared increasingly headed toward open trade conflict after several rounds of talks failed to resolve U.S. complaints over Chinese industrial policies, lack of market access in China and a $375 billion USA trade deficit.

A trade spat between the top two economies of the world began in April with Trump imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports into the United States from China, which also retaliated by imposing additional tariffs worth about Dollars three billion on 128 U.S. products. ECB President Mario Draghi said at a conference in Portugal that it may postpone an end to its bond-buying program, a move announced by the central bank just last week.

The tariffs were the result of an investigation by Commerce Department into the theft of USA intellectual property by Chinese companies.

Beijing and Washington have held three rounds of high-level talks since early May that have yet to yield a compromise. Trump has tried to throw a lifeline to ZTE, which has been struggling to survive under USA sanctions.

"Just about every major information and communication technology product was exempted", one US industry told Reuters. "The trade relationship between the United States and China must be much more equitable", he said.

This possible trade war now is threading to create more pressure on the Chinese economy.

"I understand that there's going to be concern about what the impact might be, both on the financial markets and on the global economy", he said.

He also added the actions are (quote) "necessary to defend" the U.S. -China trade tensions began in China.

But Beijing's mention of "comprehensive measures" suggests that it would go beyond tariffs, said Jake Parker of the U.S.

One of the most important reasons - China is united, it said.

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