China on Wednesday vowed to retaliate if the Trump administration goes through with a proposal to impose a 25 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, Reuters reports. President Trump has not made a final decision on the plan, which is more than double the 10 percent tariff Trump in June instructed U.S. Trade Representative Robert E. Lighthizer to draw up on the goods, about 40 percent of what China exports to the U.S. every year. Beijing called the proposal "blackmail," and said it wouldn't work.
Trump is using tariffs to pressure China into making trade concessions to open its markets more to U.S. companies. A source told Reuters the Trump administration could announce the tougher plan as early as Wednesday. Harold Maass
President Trump said in an interview on CNBC's Squawk Box on Friday that he was prepared to impose tariffs on all $500 billion in Chinese imports if China doesn't ease its trade policies toward the U.S. "I'm ready to go to 500," Trump told CNBC's Joe Kernen.
The Trump administration so far has hit China with tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese goods, prompting China to respond in kind. The Trump administration is now reviewing potential levies on $200 billion in Chinese products, and China has threatened to retaliate again if Trump goes through with the proposal. Trump said the tariffs are necessary to get China to treat U.S. companies fairly, and stop forcing them to hand over their technology for access to Chinese markets. Harold Maass
China on Thursday accused the Trump administration of "opening fire" with its proposed tariffs, warning that China would respond immediately if the U.S. goes through on Friday with new levies on $34 billion of Chinese imports, Reuters reported.
Trump has threatened to escalate the conflict with tariffs on up to $450 billion worth of Chinese goods if China imposes retaliatory tariffs. The tensions have roiled stock, currency, and commodity markets. China Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng warned that the proposed U.S. tariffs would hurt everyone. "U.S. measures are essentially attacking global supply and value chains. To put it simply, the U.S. is opening fire on the entire world, including itself," he said. The Trump administration has said the U.S. only wants to be treated fairly. Harold Maass
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is launching a campaign to push back against President Trump's new tariffs, Reuters reports. The traditionally Republican-friendly lobbying group, which has some 3 million members, claims Trump's policies threaten "to undermine the economic progress" that the administration "worked so hard to achieve."
On Friday, Canada imposed tariffs on $12.6 billion worth of American goods in response to Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs. The EU has likewise targeted $3.2 billion in American goods, a move that has already sent some Harley-Davidson production overseas to avoid the taxes. Other countries, including China and Mexico, are also prepared to add duties on imports.
To make its point that Trump's tariffs are not good for American consumers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is using a state-by-state analysis, proving that Trump-friendly states like Texas could see $3.9 billion in retaliatory tariffs, or $3 billion in South Carolina.
In a retaliatory move, Canada on Sunday began imposing tariffs on $12.6 billion worth of U.S. goods, including ketchup, dishwasher detergent, and whiskey.
The new tariffs are in response to the Trump administration's decision to place tariffs on imported steel and aluminum coming into the United States. U.S. steel and iron now face tariffs of 25 percent, and other goods, including coffee beans and strawberry jam, have been hit with tariffs of 10 percent. On Sunday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told Canadians to "make their choices accordingly" when deciding whether to purchase American items. Catherine Garcia
President Trump aims to impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of Chinese imports, primarily in the technology and telecommunications sectors, Reuters reported, citing a source who discussed the issue with the White House. Another source said the list could include 100 targeted products.
China forces U.S. companies to give up tech secrets in exchange for permission to operate in the world's No. 2 economy. Trump has repeatedly complained about China's $375 billion trade surplus with the U.S. The steel and aluminum tariffs Trump announced last week appear unlikely to trigger a feared trade war, partly because key allies are exempted, but some experts predict China will respond harshly if it is directly targeted. Harold Maass