Trump says USA will use all tools to pressure China on trade

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President Donald Trump said the US would slap tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to protect national security, prompting threats of retaliation from China to Europe.

Chinese lawmakers prepared for changes to allow President Xi Jinping to stay in power indefinitely as the country's top economic official on Monday announced a robust annual growth target, high-tech development goals and a boost in military spending.

According to a Washington Post report this week, the US and Canada are still far apart on issues like automotive manufacturing and trade dispute resolution.

"I don't think we've ever had a better relationship with China than we do right now", Trump told reporters last Friday.

Beijing could target soybeans to retaliate against any punitive trade action from the US, but it's unlikely to do that just to counter heavy USA tariffs on steel and aluminum, experts said. Since then, Trump, Lighthizer and others in the administration have expressed a preference for bilateral trade arrangements.

"He's now president for life, president for life".

"This is absolutely unacceptable and it's a point we've made many times", Trudeau said.

Hiroshige Seko, Japan's trade and industry minister, said at a news conference, "We don't think imports from Japan, an ally, have any effect at all on USA national security".

The U.S. deficit with China a year ago hit a record $375 billion, the Commerce Department said last month.

But U.S. officials and companies have been frustrated by a lack of implementation.

Despite the president's claims of progress, he has little to show for some of his central promises after more than a year in the White House.

Xi will be formally elected to his second term as president at China's largely rubber stamp parliament.

Trade makes up a smaller share of China's economy than it did a decade ago.

The above targets take into consideration the need to secure a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and are fitting given the fact that China's economy is transitioning from a phase of rapid growth to a stage of high-quality development, the report said.

This, it says, has left United States workers and businesses at a disadvantage in global markets, as "unfair trading practices flourish in the absence of a strong U.S. response". Chinese officials want to maintain the broader trade relationship, which produced a record $375 billion trade surplus for China previous year and created millions of jobs in China while providing huge volumes of cheap goods for American consumers. But no countries have yet agreed to enter negotiations, making the claim "empty", Levy said.

"The United States aims to hold countries that break the rules accountable for their actions", said a White House statement on Thursday.

The U.S. trade representative's report, however, quoted Trump's campaign statements that there "is no way to "fix" the TPP" and that "we do not need to enter into another massive global agreement that ties us up and binds us down".