'Reckless': Trump escalates trade war with another $US200b in Chinese tariffs

11 July, 2018, 22:13 | Author: Eric Barnett

A Commerce Ministry statement said, "It is totally unacceptable for American side to publish a tariff list in a way that is accelerating and escalating". "To protect the core interests of the nation and its people, China's government is, as in the past, forced to retaliate".

The proposed list of goods includes consumer items such as clothing, television components and refrigerators as well as other high-tech items, but it omitted some high-profile products like mobile phones.

China's stocks slumped following news of the new tariffs after three days of gains, and the yuan weakened.

The public will have until the end of August to comment on the list before the new tariffs - to be imposed at 10% - come into effect.

China has warned that the United States threatens to wreck the global economy after Washington escalated the trade war on Tuesday night.

"Markets are panicking about the impact of a tit-for-tat trade war on economic growth", Manulife Asset Management investment analyst William Hamlyn told AFP.

"The US closed the door for negotiations", Li said.

China and the USA face a wider trade war, after Beijing vowed on Wednesday to retaliate over Washington's threat to impose $200bn in additional tariffs on Chinese goods.

The Trump administration is readying tariffs on another $US200 billion of Chinese imports - ranging from burglar alarms to mackerel - escalating a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

In a statement US trade representative Robert Lighthizer said these new additional tariffs are a result of "China's retaliation and failure to change its practices" after the first round of tariffs.


In Beijing, Li Chenggang, assistant minister at China's Commerce Ministry, said at a forum in Beijing that the latest USA proposals interfered with the globalisation of the world economy and that China's support for a multilateral trade system would not change.

The White House move drew immediate condemnation from Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch, a Republican from Utah, who called it "reckless" and not "targeted".

The Retail Industry Leaders Association, a lobby group representing the largest U.S. retailers, said: "The president has broken his promise to bring 'maximum pain on China, minimum pain on consumers'".

The first US tariff list focused on Chinese industrial products, an attempt to reduce the direct impact on American consumers.

President Donald Trump has threatened to tax as much as $US550 billion in Chinese products - an amount that exceeds America's total imports from China a year ago. "And the retaliation that will follow will destroy thousands of U.S.jobs and hurt farmers, local businesses and entire communities". Australia's S&P/ASX 200 dropped 0.7 percent to 6,215.60.

"Sometimes our friends, when it comes to trade, are treating us worse than the enemies", Trump said at a press conference on June 29.

China could also limit visits to the United States by Chinese tourists, a business state media said is worth $115 billion, or shed some of its U.S. Treasury holdings, Iris Pang, Greater China economist at ING in Hong Kong, wrote in a note.

The news shattered the uneasy calm that had descended on markets and allowed them to regain some of the ground lost in recent months on trade war woes.

China Daily said in an editorial that Beijing had to stand up to Washington.

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