US to slap tariffs on extra $200 billion of Chinese imports

11 July, 2018, 05:15 | Author: Barbara Daniel
  • US fires next shot in China trade war

The Trump administration's tariff hike on medical equipment, electronics and other goods from China apply to exports made by USA or European companies as well as Chinese suppliers. "This new round of proposed tariffs takes the fight onto yet another level from which it is going to be hard for either side to make a graceful retreat", said Eswar Prasad, former head of the International Monteary Fund's China division. The measures are subject to a series of hearings and a public comment period. The United States and China launched what Beijing called the "biggest trade war in economic history" Friday, July 6, imposing tariffs on billions of dollars of each other's goods amid a spiraling dispute over technology.

On Friday, the USA slapped 25 percent taxes on $34 billion in Chinese imports, majority are industrial goods that the Trump administration says receive subsidies or other unfair support from Beijing.

Mr Trump has been considering tariffs against China since his officials concluded in March that Beijing violates USA intellectual-property rights, such as by forcing American firms to hand over technology.

China's retaliation to those measures was "without any worldwide legal basis or justification", Lighthizer said Tuesday.

The president last month asked the U.S. Trade Representative's office to identify US$200 billion of Chinese goods that could be hit with 10 percent tariffs. 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.

"This is where a painful situation gets more painful", said Phil Levy, a former White House economist in the George W. Bush administration.

"Tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese products amounts to another multibillion-dollar tax on American businesses and families", said Scott Lincicome, a trade lawyer and senior policy analyst for the group Republicans Fighting Tariffs. The trade war could also jeopardize China's help in confronting North Korea's nuclear program.

But Trump has said continuously that China has taken advantage of the United States economy, and he has vowed to hit almost all the country's products with tariffs, as much as $450 billion. Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against USA products.

The U.S.is now considering levying duties on a further $16 billion in Chinese goods, after a public hearing later this month. "Unfortunately, China has not changed its behavior - behavior that puts the future of the US economy at risk. It will also result in retaliatory tariffs, further hurting American workers", a Chamber spokeswoman said.

"Xi Jinping and the Communist Party do not face midterm elections in November", Rank said of the Chinese president, who is no longer bound by term limits.

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