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China's July exports growth still seen holding up despite US tariffs

08 August, 2018, 21:00 | Author: Sara Gill
  • China is threatening to impose tariffs on U.S. coffee and honey

A top adviser to US President Donald Trump said the newly proposed tariffs were not as severe as the White House had been bracing for, and he warned China not to test Trump's resolve.

China's finance ministry unveiled new sets of additional tariffs on 5,207 goods imported from the USA, with the extra levies ranging from 5 to 25 per cent.

China plans to slap additional tariffs on 5,207 categories of United States products with four levels of tariff rates - 25 percent, 20 percent, 10 percent and 5 percent.

China has already retaliated against some of these measures.

In Friday's announcement, China said it is readying tariffs on U.S. items that include agriculture and energy products, leather and machinery.

"If the United States act willfully and puts its additional tariff measures into effect, China will instantly implement such tariff measures", the commission said.

"China was forced to take the countermeasures" in response to a US plan to raise tariffs to be imposed on 200 billion dollars of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent, the commission said in a statement. "I noticed today that Japan's stock market is now worth more than China's - I love that", he told journalists at the White House.

But Chinese officials have suggested in recent weeks that if the United States proceeds with tariffs on a very wide range of Chinese goods, then Beijing may also retaliate against the Chinese-owned operations of big US companies. Another $16 billion in levies will likely follow in the coming days or weeks.

More evidence of the inaccuracy of US tariff policy, according to Wang, is that the Office of the US Trade Representative announced in July how companies could apply for exclusion from the newly imposed tariffs on Chinese imports. The Chinese side seem to be seeking to match that ratio with the new proposals.

Based on rational and thorough research and consultation, China's latest move takes into full consideration the interests of Chinese people and companies, and is expected to defend the multilateral trading system and global industrial chain, according to Chinese authorities and analysts.

"Governing a country is not like doing business", the paper said.

FILE - A clerk counts Chinese yuan and US dollar banknotes at a branch of Bank of China in Taiyuan, China, Jan. 4, 2016.

Warning that China had "better take President (Donald) Trump seriously", Kudlow insisted the Asian giant "is in trouble right now - their economy is lousy, investors are walking out, the currency is falling".

The commentary on the paper's front page went on to characterize as "wishful thinking" Trump's efforts to get other countries to cooperate with the United States against China and blasted the administration for turning worldwide trade into a "zero-sum game". Rather, the USA importers bringing the products into the United States pay the tariffs. Farmer groups have decried the trade tensions as soybean futures slumped.

President Donald Trump tweeted Sunday morning that his tariffs are "working big time" and made a freakish claim that the money raised from these new import taxes will go a long way to helping pay down America's large debt. Likewise, another of Mr Trump's tweets claimed that foreign countries are paying the tariffs he has imposed on steel, aluminium and a variety of products being shipped from China.

Answering a reporter's question about what was specifically said on trade, Wang said: "We did not speak in such details".

The People's Daily editorial said the USA was "turning global trade into a zero-sum game" in the hope of forcing China to make a tremendous compromise.


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