China slaps retaliatory tariffs on 128 US imports

Posted on 02 April 2018
 

Source: Channel NewsAsia

China on Monday imposed new tariffs on 128 US imports worth $3 billion, including fruits and pork, in retaliation to US duties on steel and aluminium, fuelling fears of a trade war.

Beijing's move, which the Xinhua news agency said was decided by the custom tariffs commission of the State Council, follows weeks of heated rhetoric and threats between the world's two biggest economies.

President Donald Trump is seeking to cut the massive US trade deficit with China.

Beijing had warned last month that it was considering the tariffs of 15 percent and 25 percent on a range of products that also include wine, nuts and aluminium scrap.

The levies are in response to the aluminium and steel tariffs that have also angered US allies from Europe to Canada and Australia.

Trump, however, has temporarily suspended the tariffs for the European Union as well as Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and South Korea.

But the White House has unveiled plans to impose new tariffs on some $60 billion of Chinese imports over the "theft" of intellectual property.

China has called on the United States to stop its "economic intimidation" and had warned that it was ready to hit back.

"HEAVY BLOW"

But Beijing has so far held fire against major US imports such as soybeans or Boeing aircraft - items that state-run daily the Global Times suggested should be targeted.

The nationalistic newspaper said in an editorial last week that China has "nearly completed its list of retaliatory tariffs on US products and will release it soon."

"The list will involve major Chinese imports from the US," the newspaper wrote, without saying which items were included.

"This will deal a heavy blow to Washington that aggressively wields the stick of trade war and will make the US pay a price for its radical trade policy toward China," the Global Times wrote.

Despite the rhetoric, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Thursday suggested the new measures on intellectual property were a "prelude to a set of negotiations".

The United States ran a US$375.2 billion deficit with China last year.


Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/business/china-slaps-retaliatory-tariffs-on-128-us-imports-10094518


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