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Trump going ahead with tariffs on $16B in Chinese imports

Trump going ahead with tariffs on $16B in Chinese imports

Beijing has announced plans to retaliate immediately against the latest round of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports by slapping a wide range of American products, worth $16 billion, with a 25 percent levy.

"We have made the case to the Administration, in the strongest possible terms, that tariffs imposed on semiconductors imported from China will hurt America's chipmakers, not China's, and will do nothing to stop China's problematic and discriminatory trade practices", he said.

The US will impose a 25% tariff on $16 billion worth of Chinese goods starting August 23.

China reported larger than expected exports in July, even as the USA prepared a new list of products for tariffs.

Year-on-year, the growth of China's exports to the U.S. slowed to 11 percent last month from 12.5 percent in June, while import growth accelerated to 11 percent from 9 percent.

It said a combined total of $6.3bn worth of semiconductors and related products would now be hit by tariffs.

The Trump administration has maintained that the tariffs are necessary to force China into changing economic behavior it says harms the US. But it held off on a final $16 billion as a result of concerns raised by USA companies.

The new set of measures are the second tranche of tariffs that President Donald Trump originally announced in March, following tariffs imposed on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports that went into effect in early July.

Trump's mission to reduce the USA trade deficit via the threat of tariffs has brought him into conflict with China as well as United States allies, roiling financial markets and raising fears of a global trade war the International Monetary Fund has warned may undermine the strongest economic upswing in years.

All in all, China's trade surplus with the United States shrank to $28.08 billion in July against $28.97 billion in the previous month. There is a mandatory 60-day comment period for industries to ask for exemptions from the tariffs.

Imports also rose much faster in July thanks to still solid domestic demand, official data showed on Wednesday, with purchases of commodities like copper and iron ore rising from June.

The trade balance between the two countries, which is at the center of the tariffs tussle, continued to be in favor of China.

Trump, who has boasted that trade wars are "easy to win", has threatened to ramp up the pressure and slap tariffs on virtually all of China's exports to the United States if Beijing does not back down and take steps to reduce the $335 billion U.S. trade deficit with that country.

"Certain people go against the tide for their own private ends and go against morality; the barrier of tariffs wantonly rise, and the stick of hegemony is raised all around", the commentary said.

The world's two biggest economies are caught up in a trade dispute over Washington's allegations that China uses predatory tactics, including outright cybertheft, in a drive to supplant USA technological supremacy.

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