China signals retaliation against new U.S. tariffs imminent

Andrew Cummings
August 18, 2019

But earlier this month, the Trump administration said it would slap duties beginning on Sept 1 on US$300 billion of Chinese goods, which would effectively cover all of China's exports to the US.

Washington has backtracked on President Trump's threat to impose the latest tariffs on September 1.

The Office of the United States Trade Representative specified that Washington would delay tariffs on Chinese goods including some toys, certain items of clothing and footwear, cell phones, laptops and videogames until December 15.

The Trump administration's decision to delay tariffs on some items from China was "not a quid pro quo", but instead was meant to help American consumers, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross insisted Wednesday.

Trump, however, said that the U.S. is having a very good discussion on a trade deal with China.

"You may as well go to a place that's more tranquil, that's more peaceful, that's not in the crosshairs of America, that's pro-America, that's not abusing America, that's not stealing intellectual property from America", he said.

As a result of the trade war, China is doing very poorly, Trump said.

The broader S&P 500 rose 1.5 per cent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 2 per cent.

"The president has transitioned from boasting about stock market gains to blaming the Fed for recent declines and softness in the economy". Bass noted "every time it (Trump's actions) makes the stock market go down a few hundred points" the president "backs away". "And he's promised that he will win the fight with China", White adds.

However, the president remains determined to keep China's human rights abuses from complicating his trade negotiations. The White House is also dropping 25 types of products from the tariff list altogether "based on health, safety, national security and other factors", such as vehicle seats, shipping containers, cranes, certain fish and religious literature.

"But then, we're not talking about rational economic policy here". The consumer has not paid for them.

China strongly protested the United States tariff plan in a telephone conference on Tuesday. "They haven't bitten into us at all except for the reporters that want to make it look that way, but they don't understand what's happening", he said.

Trump claimed that millions of jobs have been lost and thousands of companies are shutting down in China. "Wheat! That's not a good deal".

He said U.S. and Chinese officials had "a very good conversation" earlier this week, before his administration delayed until Dec 15 tariffs on over US$150 billion in Chinese imports, including toys, cellphones, and laptop and tablet computers.

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