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Trump, China trade war, tariffs

Trump, China trade war, tariffs

Last Friday, China's Finance Ministry introduced new sets of additional tariffs on 5,207 goods imported from the USA worth $60 billion.

According to Reuters, the Chinese commerce minister said in a statement after the latest round of tariff threats that the U.S. had "repeatedly escalated the situation against the interests of both enterprises and consumers".

Pressure from the Trump administration is mounting on China after the United States and European Union agreed in late July not to impose new tariffs, and instead negotiate the removal of trade barriers in order to realise an open market.

An array of US farm exports, chiefly soybeans, already are under Chinese tariffs. However, the release from China's Ministry Of Commerce is leaving a door open for negotiations with the U.S., as it states that "China always believes that consultation on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit is an effective way to resolve trade differences".

The spat began in April with the Trump administration imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports into the U.S. from China, which also retaliated by imposing additional tariffs worth about Dollars three billion on 128 United States products.

The latest round of U.S. tariffs would range between five percent and 25 percent and would hit 5,027 products - a variety of agricultural goods such as beef, as well as small planes, chemical components, textiles, liquefied natural gas and condoms.

The White House has imposed a 25 percent tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods containing "industrially significant technologies" in an escalating, tit-for-tat conflict between the world's two largest economies.

The action intensified on Thursday, when US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer announced that Trump instructed the USTR's office to examine the possibility of raising the tariff rate on the $200 billion worth of Chinese imports to 25%.

In July, the U.S. published a list of $200bn-worth of additional products to be hit with tariffs of 10% - a figure the USA is now considering raising to 25%.

The U.S. hit back with tariffs on 1,300 Chinese goods worth $50 billion. China's market declines weaken that nation's bargaining power in the escalating trade war, he added.

The ministry also warned that it reserves the right of further countermeasures in the intensifying trade war.

It is indeed due to the lack of meaningful consultation between China and the US that Beijing has chose to elevate the stakes in a manner that is directly reflective of Donald Trump's unwillingness to negotiate a new era in Sino-US trading relations on a win-win model.

Trump has at times said he likes this idea, and some White House officials had hoped that this might cool conservative angst in Congress.

Already, the trade war has begun to take a toll: For instance, China has lost its status as the world's second-largest stock market, falling behind Japan, The Financial Times reported on Friday.

Both Trump and China continue to issue new threats of tariffs.

FILE - A clerk counts Chinese yuan and USA dollar banknotes at a branch of Bank of China in Taiyuan, China, Jan. 4, 2016.

Among US products targeted in the latest Chinese salvo were a wide range of agricultural and energy products, including liquefied natural gas.

The iPhones, Chevrolets and other products manufactured and sold in China by US companies are mostly designed in the United States, and the Trump administration has declared various Chinese industries to be threatening USA national security, illegally copying foreign intellectual property or causing widespread job losses in the United States.

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