Friday, 14 December, 2018

China unveils retaliatory tariffs on $60B of USA goods in latest salvo

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Rhonda Young | 06 August, 2018, 23:42

But economists now worry that a continually widening trade deficit - which will be exacerbated if Trump keeps upping tariffs - will slow the US economy in the second half of the year, reports The Wall Street Journal.

China's strictly controlled news outlets have frequently rebuked the United States and the Trump administration as the trade conflict has escalated, but they have largely refrained from specifically targeting Trump.

In a front-page editorial on Monday, the overseas edition of People's Daily said Trump was "starring in his own carefully orchestrated street fighter-style deceitful drama" in which diplomacy had been reduced to nothing but a "trading game in which everything should follow the rule of America first".

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White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said the yuan is falling partly because China is a "lousy investment", trash talking the world's second-largest economy after it threatened more retaliatory tariffs on USA exports.

After weeks of half-measure negotiations between the two countries, talks have broken down and now both the White House and Beijing are locked in a rapid escalation of trade threats that experts have predicted could damage both economies.

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It has also slapped 25 percent tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports.

Washington is expected to soon implement tariffs on an additional US$16 billion of Chinese goods, which China has already said it will match immediately.

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

President Donald Trump this week ordered officials to consider imposing a 25 per cent tax on US$200 billion worth of imported Chinese goods, up from an initial 10 per cent rate.

The trade war, rising corporate bankruptcies, and a steep decline in the value of the yuan versus the dollar have raised concerns that China's economy could face a steeper slowdown. Data for May was revised slightly to show the trade deficit falling to $43.2 billion, instead of the previously reported $43.1 billion.

"I think that China will actually feel more pain" than the U.S., Zarit said last month. The fuel now joins crude oil, certain refined products and coal on the list of US imports that may be slapped with duties of up to 25 percent. The Trump administration is weighing an additional round of tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods.

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In Twitter posts on Sunday, Trump said the US' punitive tariffs were "working big time".

Since January of this year, the total equities in China's stock market have tumbled by over $2 trillion, and most of the loss is due to the intensifying trade and tariff disputes with the USA started by President Donald Trump.

The new China tariffs on the US will impact metals, chemicals, and agriculture-related items.

The dispute is part of broader USA complaints about global trading conditions that have prompted Trump to raise duties on steel, aluminum, washing machines or solar panels from Canada, Europe, Japan and South Korea. "Market participants foresee a relatively stable Chinese currency in the near term, without fear of impacts from the U.S".

In addition to Beijing's top-down control, the recent diversification of China's economy and its exports makes the country better positioned to endure a trade war now than it could have in the past, NPR's Jim Zarroli reports. "China trade dispute. They expect solid economic growth momentum amid policy fine-tuning", it said.

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