Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
People | By Neil Grant

Trump readies tariffs on another $US200m of Chinese goods

Trump readies tariffs on another $US200m of Chinese goods

China's Commerce Ministry called the new wave of US tariffs "totally unacceptable" and vowed to protect its core interests.

China immediately retaliated with duties on the same value of United States goods, including soybeans and cars. Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against USA products. That came four days after Washington added 25 per cent duties on $34 billion of Chinese goods and Beijing responded by increasing its own taxes on the same amount of American imports.

"Although I have supported the administration's targeted efforts to combat China's technology transfer regime, tonight's announcement appears reckless and is not a targeted approach", Hatch said in a statement.

Beijing "never yields to threat or blackmail" and will retaliate against the "groundless" tariffs, China's Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen said in written comments to Bloomberg.

However, in a statement this morning the Chinese ministry of commerce hit back, saying: "China is shocked by U.S. behaviour".

The move is a major escalation in a brewing trade war between the world's two largest economies.

The US has announced its plans to impose taxes on a further $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, in retaliation for China's retaliation to America's first round of tariffs. The administration says its tariffs are created to punish China for what it calls unfair trade practices, theft of intellectual property, and "forced technology transfers".

"There is still a good six or seven weeks before these (tariffs) take effect so it is not like we are going to see these tomorrow, but it is definitely the next step in a trade war", TD Securities global strategist James Rossiter said. Both governments have raised tariffs on $34 billion worth of each other's goods and already said they are considering additional charges on another $16 billion.

Soybeans, crushed to make cooking oil and the protein-rich animal feed ingredient soymeal, were the biggest US agriculture export to China a year ago at a value of US$12.3 billion, according to the US Department of Agriculture.

On Wednesday, the MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down about 1 percent, while the main indexes in Hong Kong and Shanghai recovered somewhat after falling more than 2 percent. "It will also result in retaliatory tariffs, further hurting American workers", a Chamber spokeswoman said. While earlier tariffs were expected to have only a limited impact, economists warn a full-blow trade war could derail the strongest economic upswing in years. However, because China exports more to the U.S. than it imports there are limits on the amount of tariffs Beijing can impose on American goods.

The White House has complained that China has used predatory practices in a relentless push to grant Chinese companies an unfair advantage in the industries of the future, including robotics, electric cars and biopharmaceuticals.

"The behavior of the USA is hurting China, hurting the world, and hurting itself", the ministry said in a statement, adding that it was "shocked" by United States actions.

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