Published: Wed, August 08, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

China fires salvo in trade war with United States

China fires salvo in trade war with United States

China has once again threatened to slap retaliatory tariffs against the United States in response to the Trump administration's trade policies, this time targeting $60 billion in USA imports with tariffs ranging from 5 percent to as high as 25 percent.

In a statement, the Commerce Ministry said China could add duties of 5, 10, 20 or 25 percent on 5,207 types of US imports.

China plans to impose a 25% tariff on imports of US-manufactured solar cells - but the world's biggest manufacture of solar cells now imports few of the cells used to make panels that generate power.

The response follows the Trump administration's proposal of a 25-percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports.

After months of economic tensions, the USA and China are continuing trade talks, said President Trump, who on Saturday touted the effectiveness of tariffs in a series of tweets.

China announced a $60 billion list of USA goods on Friday including coffee, honey and industrial chemicals for retaliation if Washington goes ahead with its latest tariff threat. While that could signal investors pulling money from the country, it could also help Chinese exporters manage the impact of higher U.S. import tariffs.

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The Chinese Ministry of Commerce said Friday that if USA continues to "blackmail" China, the conflict will only intensify.

"The implementation date of the taxation measures will be subject to the actions of the USA, and China reserves the right to continue to introduce other countermeasures", the statement said. USA businesses either eat that extra cost or pass it along to consumers.

"For the goods that have less impact on China's industrial production and consumption, the tariff rates are much higher, but that can effectively hit back on the United States when it is necessary to levy", he said.

President Trump vowed Saturday to continue imposing tariffs as a central part of his economic agenda and called his critics "fools", pivoting sharply away from the free-trade message that senior advisers had tried to erect in recent weeks.

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%.

Since January of this year, the total equities in China's stock market have tumbled by over $2 trillion, and most of the loss is due to the intensifying trade and tariff disputes with the US started by President Donald Trump. The White House initially announced tariffs - 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum - arguing they would protect USA companies and allow for the creation of new manufacturing plants - key Trump promises in the 2016 presidential campaign.

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Even so, US President Donald Trump is insisting his tariffs on imports from China are working, taking to Twitter at the weekend to write: "Tariffs are working far better than anyone ever anticipated".

The State Council outlined the plan just days after the USA said it was considering higher tariffs on $200bn of Chinese goods than initially planned.

Hopes had been rising that Trump might drop his trade-war campaign after the president announced a deal last week with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker that would see the USA and EU cut tariffs and other barriers.

The US, the world's largest economy, has a trade deficit of nearly Dollars 500 billion with China, the world's second largest economy. "Other countries use Tariffs against, but when we use them, foolish people scream!" "They found they were hurt by rising costs, as a large number of products imported from China were hit by additional tariffs", Wang added.

While the Trump administration's steel tariffs might be meant to increase domestic-steel production, bigger job losses could happen at manufacturing companies that use steel, Paglia noted.

'.Because of Tariffs we will be able to start paying down large amounts of the $21 Trillion in debt that has been accumulated, much by the Obama Administration, while at the same time reducing taxes for our people.

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