Trump's many trade wars

U.S. President Donald Trump's expected announcement of new tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods drew an immediate threat of reprisals from Beijing.

Collection of tariffs on the long-anticipated list will start September 24 but the rate will increase to 25 percent by the end of 2018, allowing USA companies some time to adjust their supply chains to alternate countries, a senior administration official said.

"Further, if China takes retaliatory action against our farmers or other industries, we will immediately pursue phase three, which is tariffs on approximately $267 billion of additional imports", President Trump warned.

Last month, United States customs officials began collecting a 25 percent import duty on 279 Chinese goods valued at $16 billion, composed mostly of industrial products including steam turbines and iron girders.

China had already vowed to retaliate if the United States imposed further tariffs.

The US has "poisoned" the atmosphere for negotiations, Fang said, but added that the two sides can talk about how to cut the US trade deficit with China.

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In an earlier round of tariffs on $50 billion of goods, the Trump administration removed proposals on flat-panel television sets from the final list in June. Chinese officials have suggested that planned talks between trade delegations from both countries will now not go ahead.

As President Trump continues to take a tough stance on trade, US businesses are looking for ways to avoid costly import-export fees, a byproduct of ongoing trade tensions. China has said it will respond to the next round of United States levies with retaliatory tariffs on $60 billion of U.S goods ranging from liquefied natural gas to aircraft.

It has signalled it might target products manufactured in China that are critical to the supply chains of USA technology and manufacturing companies; products relatively low in value but not easily or readily available elsewhere. It will cost jobs and economic growth even though China is now far less reliant on exports than it once was.

Trump has been locked into a trade dispute with Beijing over China's policy of forcing United States companies to hand over trade secrets as a cost of doing business in China.

Trump kicked off his trade war with China in March, imposing higher tariffs after an investigation by Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer had found that China used foreign ownership restrictions to require tech transfers from USA to Chinese companies, as well as conducting espionage to acquire intellectual property.

President Donald Trump said the latest round of tariffs was in response to China's "unfair trade practices, including subsidies and rules that require foreign companies in some sectors to bring on local partners".

Trump Imposes $200 Billion in New Tariffs on Chinese Goods
Beijing has warned that it would hit an additional $60 billion in American goods if Trump ordered more tariffs. FILE PHOTO: A worker places U.S. and China flags near the Forbidden City ahead of a visit by U.S.

The new round of tariffs will take effect on September 24 at a 10% level and rise to 25% on January 1, 2019.

"China has had many opportunities to fully address our concerns", Trump said.

The products spared included consumer electronics like smart watches and Bluetooth devices, child safety products such as high chairs, auto seats and play pens, and certain health-and-safety products such as bicycle helmets, the officials said. And China has retaliated in kind, hitting American soybeans, among other goods, in a shot at the president's supporters in the USA farm belt.

The US Trade Representative's office eliminated 297 product categories from the proposed tariff list, along with some subsets of other categories.

"This backdrop fits with the singles and doubles thesis we laid out Friday, which argues not to get too invested in a single trade idea and to remain nimble", says McCormick. "Business hates uncertainty. They'd rather have an imperfect trading relationship than this much chaos".

"Consumers - not China - will bear the brunt of these tariffs and American farmers and ranchers will see the harmful effects of retaliation worsen". China has retaliated in kind, hitting American soybeans, among other goods, in a shot at the president's supporters in the US farm belt.

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