White House proposed increasing tariffs on $200B in Chinese imports

05 August, 2018, 01:59 | Author: Kim Reid
  • US President Donald Trump recently threatened to slap punitive tariffs on all Chinese imports which accounted for more than $500 billion last yearMore

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer earlier this month ratcheted up tensions when he released a list of thousands of additional Chinese exports worth $200 billion that could face 10% tariffs after a public comment period. "Now, the U.S. coerces and pressures others unilaterally".

"China's position remains clear and unchanged: blackmail and U.S. pressure against the PRC will never work", the diplomat said, answering the question on the issue. Administration officials are exploring an additional $200 billion of goods on which tariffs might be imposed.

A second round of tariffs on products worth $16 billion could take effect as soon as this week.

China responded that day by imposing tariffs on the same amount of USA goods, largely targeting soybeans and other agricultural products.

The ministry also took note of what it said were conflicting White House messages: threats of higher tariffs but also signals it wants to resume settlement talks.

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The process for enacting tariffs on the $200 billion in goods, which includes fish sticks, baseball gloves, handbags, spark plugs, yarn and hundreds of other products, is just getting started, with hearings set for later this month. "The 25 percent duty would be applied to the proposed list of products previously announced on July 10".

Washington wants China to open its market more to U.S. products and stop harming American workers, one official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Over the past year Trump has challenged the rules that govern global trade, hitting WTO members with billions of dollars of tariffs and blocking nominees to WTO's dispute-resolution panel.

In the end, it's most likely that only $100 billion of USA imports and exports will ultimately face higher tariffs in the global standoff, says Moody's. Beijing retaliated by imposing similar charges on the same amount of US products.

Chinese leaders have offered to narrow their politically sensitive trade surplus with the United States by purchasing more American goods.

USA business groups have expressed angst about Trump's approach, warning it could drive up costs for companies and consumers.

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While there is no expectation that the BoJ is going to change what has been by far the world's biggest and longest quantitative easing (QE) program - purchases of bonds and other securities to keep rates at negligible levels - even the hint of higher rates might eventually see some of the trillions of Japanese savings invested offshore repatriated.

Two Trump administration officials told reporters on a conference call that Trump remains open to communications with Beijing.

Further roiling the trade debate is the falling value of the Chinese currency, which makes its exports cheaper around the world.

United States retailers say the proposed tariffs are the wrong approach and will harm U.S. companies, workers, and consumers.

In recent weeks, White House officials have claimed progress in talks with the European Union and Mexico, while talks with Canada and China have broken down.

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