Published: Wed, August 08, 2018
World News | By Joan Terry

Trump going ahead with tariffs on $16B in Chinese imports

Trump going ahead with tariffs on $16B in Chinese imports

China will impose tariffs on an additional $16 billion worth of USA products, officials announced Wednesday, marking the latest parry in an escalating trade war between the two countries.

The tranche of 25 per cent tariffs - which covers 279 products including electronic parts, plastics, chemicals, batteries, tractors and railway cars - follows $US34 billion worth of tariffs announced by the U.S. government in July.

"Looking ahead, we expect export growth to cool in the coming months, though this will primarily reflect softer global growth rather than U.S. tariffs, the direct impact of which will continue to be mostly offset by the renminbi's (yuan's) recent depreciation", Capital Economics' Senior China Economist Julian Evans-Pritchard wrote in a note. They will take effect on August 23.

"With each successive round of tariffs, Trump continues to back China into a corner, forcing Beijing to respond in kind", said James Zimmerman, a partner in the Beijing office of global law firm Perkins Coie and a former chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China.

The US is now considering tariffs on another $200bn in goods, including consumer products that were spared in the initial round.

The United States and China implemented tariffs on $34billion worth of each other's goods in July.

Mr Trump has said he would be willing to hit all of China's imports with duties.

China has repeatedly warned it will strike back against any further punitive measures by Trump, saying the United States is threatening the global free trade order with its protectionism.

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Washington already imposed tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese products on July 6. But it held off on a final $16 billion as a result of concerns raised by United States companies. After Liu visited Washington later that month, the nations released a joint statement pledging to reduce the US trade deficit with China, among other things. There is a mandatory 60-day comment period for industries to ask for exemptions from the tariffs.

May 19: After a meeting, the two countriesannounce the outline of a trade dealto avoid the tariffs.

The surplus with the United States was higher than China's overall trade surplus in July, which was $28.05 billion, indicating China ran a net trade deficit with the world excluding the U.S.

June 15: Trump rolls out thefinal list of goods subject to new tariffs. Chinese data on Wednesday showed exports to the USA rose 13.3% in July to $41.5 billion against a year ago.

June 18: Trumpthreatens a 10% tariff on another $200 billion worth of Chinese goods.

"Certain people go against the tide for their own private ends and go against morality; the barrier of tariffs wantonly rise, and the stick of hegemony is raised all around", the commentary said.

China has not yet given a date for its previously announced retaliatory tariffs on $16 billion in US goods, which will target commodities such as crude oil, natural gas, coal and some refined oil products.

August 3: China announces that the country will impose tariffs of various rates on another $60 billion worth of United States goods if Trump moves forward with his latest threat.

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