Economy

White House slams China’s ‘weak’ tariff threat and ‘lousy’ economy

White House slams China’s ‘weak’ tariff threat and ‘lousy’ economy

China today announced a $60 billion list of USA goods including coffee, honey and industrial chemicals for retaliation if Washington goes ahead with its latest tariff threat.

The ministry also warned that it reserves the right of further countermeasures in the intensifying trade war.

Mr Trump is aiming to reduce his country's $375.6 billion trade deficit in goods - the gap between imports and exports - with China. China responded with a 178.6 percent tariff on the roughly $1 billion in sorghum that the USA imports to China each year.

The Trump administration ramped up pressure for trade concessions from Beijing this week by proposing a higher 25 per cent tariff on $270 billion worth of Chinese imports.

President Donald Trump and his administration have repeatedly called on China to stop unfair trading practices, stop technology and intellectual property theft, and for a decrease in the us trade deficit with the China.

Why is China threatening more tariffs? "But those fears could materialize going forward if things get worse".

The Trump administration has issued temporary emergency financial support of $12 billion to help farmers hard-hit by China's retaliatory tariffs such as soybean farmers.

The latest round of U.S. tariffs would range between five per cent and 25 per cent and would hit 5,027 products - a variety of agricultural goods such as beef, as well as small planes, chemical components, textiles, liquefied natural gas and condoms.

The tariffs would be imposed at four different tax rates, China's Ministry of Commerce said in a statement.

On March 1, President Donald Trump announced that the US would be slapping a 25 percent tariff on all steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on all aluminum imports.

The Chinese Commerce Ministry blamed the US for escalating the situation.

"They better not underestimate the president", White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said in an interview on Fox Business Network.

Answering a reporter's question about what was specifically said on trade, Wang said: "We did not speak in such details". The move was meant to bring China back to the negotiating table for talks over USA demands for structural changes to the Chinese economy and a cut in the bilateral trade deficit.

It also said that the date of implementation of the taxes will depend on actions taken by the U.S., while adding that consultation on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit is an effective way to resolve trade differences.

However, speaking to reporters at the White House, Kudlow said there had been some communication on trade "at the highest level" in recent days.

"The U.S. gas industry will be much harder hit by this as China imports only a small volume whereas U.S. suppliers see China as a major future market".

China became the world's second-biggest LNG importer in 2017, as it buys more gas in order to wean the country off dirty coal to reduce pollution.


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