China trade tensions escalate as Trump approves $50bn of tariffs

Jermaine Castillo
June 17, 2018

Why the "Made in China 2025" plan has become a targetSee how American businesses are girding for new tariffsThe IMF says the global outlook is worse as tensions riseHere's what a full-blown global trade war might look likeMoody's doesn't expect tariffs to blow up inflationHours after the US announcement - China's Finance Ministry issued a list of 545 product categories, also covering about $34 billion in exports from the USA, to be subject to an additional 25 percent tariff starting July 6. International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde yesterday warned that the Trump administration's trade policies were likely to hurt the USA economy and undermine the world's trade system.

Chinese media have mocked US President Donald Trump over plans to impose 25% tariffs on $50bn worth of Chinese goods, saying "wise men build bridges but fools build walls".

China has published its own list of threatened tariffs on US$50 billion of U.S. goods, including soybeans, aircraft and cars, and has said it would hit back if Washington follows up with further measures.

The country's Commerce Ministry said China will apply tariffs on U.S. goods at the "same scale and the same strength".

China's Commerce Ministry answered quickly to the USA taxes on Chinese imports.

By selling more to other countries, farmers might be able to make up for most product sales lost to price increases in China, agricultural economists say.

Additional tariffs for 545 items worth about Dollars 34 billion including agricultural and aquatic products, and vehicles, will be effective from July 6, 2018, a statement issued by China's Customs Tariffs commission said. The Chinese haven't issued a list but have stated it would be an identical 25% on $50 billion of American exports.

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"The United States can no longer tolerate losing our technology and intellectual property through unfair economic practices", Trump said.

"Following the path of expanding and opening up is China's best response to the trade dispute between China and the United States, and is also the responsibility that major countries should have to the world", it added.

"We are assessing the impact these tariffs and any reciprocal action could have on our supply chain and commercial business", said Boeing spokesman Charles Bickers.

China said it wants to place new duties on items such as farm products, autos and seafood starting on July 6.

The U.S. imports a LOT more Chinese goods than the Chinese import in regards to American goods and its easy to see above.

Mr Trump has already slapped tariffs on steel and aluminium imports from Canada, Mexico, Europe and Japan, drawing a rebuke from United States allies.

Experts panned Trump's strategy of using tariffs to attempt to curb China's manufacturing rise.

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"The question that no one can answer right now is whether Trump will then escalate into a full-blown trade war", said David Dollar, a China expert at the Brookings Institution, a Washington-based think tank.

Washington rescinded a ban on sales of U.S. technology to ZTE after the company agreed to pay a $1-billion fine and hire American-picked compliance managers.

"The trade war was started many years ago by them, and the United States lost".

Lighthizer says the duties are created to impede Chinese exporters from stealing American intellectual property and using it to make cheap technology to sell to the USA, reducing the earnings of their US competitors.

The USTR official said the tariffs were aimed at changing China's behavior on its technology transfer policies and massive subsidies to develop high-tech industries.

Beijing has reiterated that it will respond "appropriately" to any measures imposed by the US.

The Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association, which represents vehicle parts makers, called the tariffs "taxes that hurt U.S. companies, put jobs at risk, and negatively impact consumers". Mexico has already retaliated with its own tariffs on U.S. goods. (ZTCOY.PK) In April, the US banned ZTE from buying American technology for seven years, effectively putting the company out of business. "Those are crown jewels for this country", Trump said.

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