Trump to propose 25-pct tariff on $200b of Chinese imports

Trump to propose 25-pct tariff on $200b of Chinese imports

In early July, the USA government imposed 25 per cent tariffs on an initial US$34 billion of Chinese imports.

In retaliation, Beijing said it would also levy duties on an equal dollar amount worth of United States goods as well as increase regulation for American companies that are doing business in the country.

It's the same story for liquefied natural gas (LNG), with only one US cargo booked for arrival in August, and it departed the Gulf of Mexico on July 1, before much of the current escalation in the trade dispute.

The US argues that Chinese companies sell their products at lower prices in foreign markets than they do at home - a practice known as "dumping".

Part of the strategy seems to be to intensify the pressure on China quickly through rapid escalation in the hope it will force an early restart of negotiations on advantageous terms and permit de-escalation quickly, before the economic damage becomes too great.

Meanwhile, after the initial $34 billion worth of tariffs came into effect last month, a review of an additional $16 billion worth of tariffs on just under 300 separate products was initiated, with the deadline for public comments on those coming on Tuesday, July 31.

Trump had said he would implement the $200 billion round as punishment for China's retaliation against the initial tariffs aimed at forcing change in China's joint venture, technology transfer and other trade-related policies.

"The Chinese side always believes that trade disputes must be resolved through talks and negotiations and our sincerity and efforts are there for the worldwide community to see", he added.

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While the conflict nominally centers around the US's $375 billion annual goods trade deficit with China, it has morphed into a chapter in the nations' broader strategic rivalry.

It would represent a ramping up of pressure over Washington's trade standoff with Beijing.

In fact, one reason the White House intensified its tariff threats this week is because some administration officials believe that China has intentionally allowed its currency to weaken in recent months, making it cheaper for its companies to export goods to the United States. It wants China to stop stealing USA corporate secrets, abandon plans to boost its high-tech industries at America's expense and stop subsidizing Chinese companies with cheap loans that enable them to compete unfairly.

Increasing the rates to 25 percent could make them significantly more painful. Beijing responded by imposing the same penalties on the same amount of USA imports.

But Trump's tariffs have drawn criticism at home in the United States for driving up costs for consumers and companies that rely on Chinese imports.

China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang reiterated at a regular news briefing in Beijing that the United States' efforts at "blackmail" would fail.

The Chinese government said Friday that it would impose duties of 25%, 20%, 10% and 5% on the products if the Trump administration follows through on threats to tax $200 billion of Chinese goods.

China has appealed to Washington to stay level-headed and "correct its attitude" following a USA threat to raise tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods in a dispute over technology policy.

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