USA and China Officially in a Trade War over "Unfair Trade Practices"

17 June, 2018, 02:13 | Author: Martin Tyler
  • Trump announces tariffs on US$50 billion of Chinese good - and vows more if China retaliates

The effective date of the tariffs on the remaining $16 billion of US goods will be announced later, according to the commerce ministry.

The US president said the new tariffs were created to punish China for the theft of American intellectual property and technology.

US trade groups and some large companies such as Boeing said on Friday (Jun 15) they were beginning to evaluate how new tariffs in the US-China trade spat could affect their operations.

China's Ministry of Commerce said the decision to impose tariffs meant "all previously agreed trade negotiation results are no longer valid".

China and the USA are major seafood trading partners beyond just lobster, and the new tariffs would apply to dozens of products that China imports from the US, including salmon, tuna and crab.

Most are food and other farm goods, hitting Trump's rural supporters hardest.

The 25% tariffs come into effect July 6th and will cover roughly $34 billion worth of imports composed of a list of vetted goods that were announced in April and reviewed in May.

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The dispute revived after the White House renewed its plan for a tariff hike on $50 billion of Chinese goods as part of the technology dispute.

"The United States can no longer tolerate losing our technology and intellectual property through unfair economic practices", Trump said in the statement.

The United States and China have the world's biggest trading relationship but official ties are increasingly strained over complaints Beijing's industry development tactics violate its free-trade pledges and hurt American companies.

China's government took the decision based on relevant provisions of the Foreign Trade Law of China and the Regulations of the People's Republic of China on Import and Export Duties, as well as the fundamental principles of global laws.

The country has not yet announced an effective date for tariffs on the remaining 114 goods worth $16 billion, which include crude oil, natural gas, coal, some refined oil products and medical equipment.

Trump has triggered a trade war with Canada, Mexico and the European Union over steel and aluminum and has threatened to impose duties on European cars.

"Just two weeks ago, the ME delegation heard directly from our state's lobster industry about the economic hardship a trade war with China would cause them".

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Trade between the two countries "has been very unfair, for a very long time", Trump said, adding that "this situation is no longer sustainable".

ZTE last week agreed to pay a $1 billion fine to the US government to end a crippling supplier ban imposed after it broke an agreement to discipline executives who conspired to evade USA sanctions on Iran and North Korea. Mexico has already retaliated with its own tariffs on U.S. goods.

The USTR official said the tariffs were aimed at changing China's behavior on its technology transfer policies and massive subsidies to develop high-tech industries.

United States officials say Beijing has sought industrial dominance in the emerging technologies through the theft of American know-how through forced technology transfers, hacking and other forms industrial espionage.

The Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association, which represents vehicle parts makers, called the tariffs "taxes that hurt United States companies, put jobs at risk, and negatively impact consumers". (ZTCOY.PK) In April, the USA banned ZTE from buying American technology for seven years, effectively putting the company out of business.

"There isn't one country who would give up their rights to advance technology and make industrial upgrades", said the Global Times editorial.

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