China responds to Trump tariffs

China could face higher prices for fruit, nuts in tariff battle with US, but even that's not certain

US President Donald Trump lit a slow-burning fuse on Thursday to launch long-promised anti-China tariffs, but his actions appeared to be more of a warning shot than the start of a full-blown trade war with Beijing. "It's time", Trump told reporters yesterday at a White House news conference. He said in recent months, China has felt increased pressure from its trade partners. China claimed that the slides back its stance.

As per USTR, the American US consultation request identifies apparent breaches by China of WTO rules, harming the intellectual property rights of US companies and innovators. Meanwhile, business groups representing companies ranging from Walmart Inc. are warning USA tariffs could raise prices for consumers and sideswipe stock prices.

"If the USA purchases whatever it wants, on the one hand, but refuses to sell China products we want, and continues to blames us for the trade imbalance, is it fair?" said Chinese Foreign Affairs Spokeswoman Hua Chunying.

Pillsbury, now with The Hudson Institute, calls the president's move long over due.

That will nearly certainly spell a further escalation of tensions.

Brazil, Japan and Australia, were among those criticizing the USA tariffs measures during the debates. "It is impossible to imagine that they can not", Robert Carnell, head of Asia Pacific Research at ING in Singapore, wrote in a client note.

USA diplomat Jason Mack called for a vote on China's text on "mutually beneficial cooperation", which was then easily adopted by the 47-member forum. "This can turn ugly on a global scale very quickly".

The latest proposed Chinese tariffs would add a 25 percent charge on pork and aluminum scrap, mirroring Trump's 25 percent duty on steel, according to the Commerce Ministry.

China's measures include possible tariffs of 15 percent on goods such as fruits, nuts, wine and steel pipes.

"Many countries are calling to negotiate better trade deals because they don't want to have to pay the steel and aluminum tariffs", Trump said as he signed an order to impose new tariffs on China.

Trump thrives on keeping people guessing, and right now, even some of his top staff members aren't sure what will happen on trade.

China, the world's second-largest economy has responded to President Trump's controversial trade tariffs.

Analysts said that traders were also spooked because China is the biggest buyer of United States government bonds, which the U.S. needs to sell to keep its economic wheels greased.

Trump has also riled China by signing a new Taiwan Travel Act last Friday. The president has frequently taken aim at China's huge surplus in goods trade with the United States, which reached $375 billion previous year.

The president's plan also includes imposing new restrictions, making it more hard for the Chinese to invest money in the US, along with additional measures from the US Treasury Department.

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As an economist and expert in global trade, I don't see how the proposed tariffs will resolve either one.

It would be a major blow to USA farmers, as a third of their soybean exports go to China, in a business worth $14 billion previous year. US Trade Representative Lighthizer warned on Wednesday that Washington would take "counter measures" if Beijing targeted US agriculture.

No tariffs have been collected yet, as measures in both China and the USA are subject to further negotiation and public consultation. He predicted tough talks ahead.

A United Kingdom government spokesperson said they welcomed the "signals" that the USA government was considering European Union wide exemptions for limited time period.

At a time when USA wine exports have been slipping overall, there's been growth in exports to China, where a rapidly growing middle class is adopting many Western tastes.

"They need to watch for what the two countries actually do - and not what they say they're going to do", he said.

While Pillsbury and others believe more people are seeing China's actions for what they are, his concern is that China is expanding its influence worldwide at a faster rate than the United States.

In addition to the tariffs, the USA also plans to impose new investment restrictions, take action against China at the World Trade Organization and the Treasury Department also will propose additional measures.

"While we share the Administration's commitment to levelling the playing field for American workers and businesses, the ramifications of the tariffs for United States agriculture are particularly troubling".

The White House is linking the issues: Donald Trump trade adviser Peter Navarro told CNN this week that unless the USA gets a better deal on NAFTA, something will happen with tariffs. "I hope this will not spiral into a very broad set of sanctions on both sides", Prasad said. He exempted some countries pending negotiations and gave the immediate green light for others, like China.

"It's remarkable how badly Xi Jinping has mishandled and damaged the U.S".

As a result, foreign investment, particularly from China, has become increasingly critical to financing USA economic growth.

Ultimately, for the WTO, the key question is how other countries respond to the USA, according to Francois.

For some in China, that sends a worrying message.

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