Published: Wed, June 20, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Trump threatens to impose more trade tariffs on China

Trump threatens to impose more trade tariffs on China

"Whether that's threatening our technology leadership through intellectual property theft or forced technology transfer, we are hard at ensuring that we protect American property", he said.

President Donald Trump threatened to escalate the trade fight with China into an all-out trade war on Monday, promising to impose massive tariffs on Chinese goods unless Beijing reverses course on its own trade actions.

The United States has initiated a trade war and violated market regulations, and is harming the interests of not just the people of China and the US, but of the world.

"I have to point out that U.S. remarks confused right with wrong and made irresponsible accusations against China to cover up its unilateral and protectionist moves", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said when asked to comment on Pompeo's statement.

"If the USA loses its senses and publishes a new list", the statement said, "China will be forced to take comprehensive measures that are both strong in quantity and gravity and will fight back".

The United States has now imposed tariffs on up to $450bn in Chinese goods, out of a total of $500bn.

Beijing has offered to narrow its politically volatile trade surplus with the United States but has resisted changing technology development tactics its leaders see as a path to prosperity and to restoring China's rightful role as a global leader.

The ministry also responded to Trump's threat that a third set of tariffs, again totaling $US200 billion wroth of Chinese imports to the United States, would move forward if China hits back at the first set.

But, he said, "the United States will no longer be taken advantage of on trade by China and other countries in the world".

The tariffs announced by the White House on Friday hit more than 1,100 Chinese products with a rate of 25 percent.

He said China's recent claims of "openness and globalization" are "a joke". Chinese officials have promised to respond accordingly if Trump continues to ratchet up tensions.

These include major American exports to China such as soybeans, which brought in $14 billion in sales previous year and are grown in states that supported Trump during the 2016 presidential election.

"Most observers outside the Trump administration think that a trade war between the US and China will lead to losses on all sides", Oxford Economics analysts said in a research note.

The president asserted in a statement Monday night that China is determined "to keep the United States at a permanent and unfair disadvantage".

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However, he emphasized no additional duties would be imposed until they have gone through a legal vetting process, which includes taking comments and holding a public hearing.

In a meeting at the White House last month with the president and his top economic advisor Lawrence Kudlow, Cook told the pair that tariffs placed on Chinese imports were like a tax on US consumers.

Mounting concerns over the U.S.

Retail groups also weighed in.

In response, the Chinese government called the decision an "act of extreme pressure and blackmail" and said Trump had effectively kicked off a trade war.

"Trump is playing a game of chicken, who will blink first", said Ivan Feinseth, chief investment officer at Tigress Financial Partners.

Investors and businesses worry that a full-blown trade battle could derail global growth.

Some of the US's biggest exporters were among those most affected.

Read: What can Beijing do if China-US trade row worsens?

Washington's dispute with China is part of broader US complaints about global trading conditions that have prompted Trump to raise duties on steel, aluminum, washing machines or solar panels from Canada, Europe, Japan and South Korea. Both countries' $34 billion tariffs are set to go into effect July 6. China is following a similar schedule.

Demand for safe havens saw yield on the 10-year benchmark U.S. Treasury drop to its lowest in more than two weeks.

U.S. companies including Apple (AAPL), GM (GM) and Boeing (BA) generate large amounts of sales in China.

Earlier this month, the Trump administration gave ZTE a reprieve after the company agree to pay fines, change management and agree to American oversight.

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