‘Totally unacceptable’: Beijing vows retaliation if United States taxes $200bn of Chinese goods

13 July, 2018, 10:14 | Author: Wade Massey
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On Tuesday the Trump Administration announced a large list of Chinese products that would be targeted with the next round of tariffs the government is threatening to impose.

The statement issued by Lighthizer was that of an imperial overlord whose word is law, to be obeyed without question, with any opposition to be met by escalating reprisals.

The US on Tuesday published a list of $200 billion (€170 billion) worth of Chinese goods that could soon be hit with tariffs.

China's imports of US goods are so small that Beijing "cannot match fresh USA tariffs", said Vishnu Varathan of Mizuho Bank in a report. "If we see an increase in shipments from the latter in the coming months, we will be able to say there has been a shift in the supply chain, rather than simply a change in reporting techniques", he said.

"For over a year, the Trump Administration has patiently urged China to stop its unfair practices, open its market, and engage in true market competition", Lighthizer said.

USA ambassador Dennis Shea, who was among the first to speak at the closed-door review, argued that China had exploited its membership to take advantage of other nations and that if unchecked Beijing's misconduct would ruin the WTO.

"Unilateral actions that alienate long-standing USA allies and close off the US market to the rest of the world are not a recipe for economic growth and prosperity and are very unlikely to change China's unfair practices", ACC said.

"Given China's likelihood of retaliation, it's also billions worth of new tariffs on American exporters".

China slammed the latest U.S. tariff threat as a "totally unacceptable" escalation of their trade battle and vowed Wednesday to protect its "core interests".

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At the same time, US companies like Boeing, General Motors and Apple now make plenty of money in China's vast consumer market, giving Beijing leverage over the USA economy that it once lacked.

Trump has been considering tariffs against China since his officials concluded in March that Beijing violates US intellectual-property rights, such as by forcing American firms to hand over technology. "This is totally unacceptable", the statement said. "The negative impact of the trade friction has already appeared". But Beijing could fight back with other measures to make life hard for American companies doing business in China. The U.S. last month agreed to lift the measures after ZTE pays a record fine and consents to management changes.

"Tariffs at the end of the day are a tax, and companies are going to have to figure out how they're going to pay that tax and it's mostly going to come through higher pricing, which is going to slow the economy down", Bergh said.

There was a price to be paid by American companies as government policies legislated winners and losers.

It vowed to immediately file an additional lawsuit against the USA to the World Trade Organization.

Trade war with the world: USA tariffs on aluminum and steel from Canada, the European Union and other countries have also triggered retaliatory tariffs on United States goods. Both trends would slow economic growth.

Members of Congress are increasingly questioning Trump's tactics. It's a potential effect of a new round of tariffs the Trump administration is proposing to slap on Chinese imports as soon as September.

"If you are Trump, you basically want to go after China only after you make sure that NAFTA is a go". A Bank of America survey last week reported that investor thinking had shifted since the spring, and the market saw potential dollar-positive implications from a trade war, as the United States would be better equipped to weather a slowdown in trade than other major economies. David French, a senior official at the National Retail Federation, told the Financial Times that they could "boomerang back" and hit consumers and workers. It followed a 10.1% rise in April. Before the latest anti-China announcement, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese premier Li Keqiang held a meeting in Berlin in which they pledged to uphold the rules-based order. That would leave China only $80 billion for further retaliation. The producer of chemical compounds used in electronics only ships 10% of its product to the United States, but had wanted to expand there, according to Mr. Ma, a sales manager who only gave his last name. Holmes said the tariffs so far haven't reduced demand. "We should try to reach a deal, otherwise we will be forced to take action", she stated and expressed the hope that China and Germany "won't get caught up in a global spiral of protectionism".

Beijing has begun downplaying Made in China 2025, the state-backed industrial policy that has provoked alarm in the West and is core to Washington's complaints about the country's unfair trade practices.

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