China has threatened to slap import tax on about $60 billion of USA imports, with tax rates ranging from 5 to 25 percent, the country's commerce ministry said on Friday, calling the proposed tariff "rational and restrained".
In response to Donald Trump's indication that he would raise tariffs on over $200 billion of Chinese imports from 10% to 25%, Beijing in return stated that it is preparing retaliatory measures for tariffs on 5,207 different U.S. imports to China at variable tariff rates ranging from 5% to 25%.
Yet another reason that forced Trump's hand is that as several banks have recently pointed out, the Yuan devaluation to date has effectively offset the adverse impact to Beijing from the $34 billion in tariffs enacted on Chinese goods, mainly machinery and components (to which China retaliated with tariffs on the same amount of USA exports, especially farm products).
While previously China issued retaliatory tariffs targeting US goods in areas of the USA where President Trump typically finds support, Friday's announcement from China did not identify which USA goods would be hit with the $60 billion in new retaliatory tariffs.
An afternoon recap of the day's most important business news, delivered weekdays. This scenario would involve the U.S. slapping 25% tariffs on all goods from both China and the European Union, and them responding with similar measures. China vowed to retaliate while also urging Washington to act rationally and return to talks to resolve the dispute. The Trump administration is weighing an additional round of tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods.
The new list includes products as varied as snow blowers and 3-D printers, suggesting Chinese authorities are struggling to find enough imports their own economy can do without.
Wang told reporters at the forum that China welcomed, and was willing to work with, the United States to help with faster development and better security in the region. "China is increasingly isolated with a weak economy", he said.
"In violation of the bilateral consensus reached after multiple rounds of negotiations, the United States has again unilaterally escalated trade frictions", China's State Council Tariff Commission said in a statement.
Trump's tariffs target goods the White House says benefit from industrial policies such as "Made in China 2025", which calls for developing Chinese competitors in robotic, artificial intelligence and other fields. He told trade officials this week to consider raising that to 25 percent.
Beijing has insisted its measures are "rational" and warned the U.S. its tactics would not work. China's trading partners complain those might violate its market-opening pledges by subsidizing or shielding Chinese companies from competition.
The United States alleges that China steals US corporate secrets and wants it to stop doing so, and is also seeking to get Beijing to abandon plans to boost its high-tech industries at America's expense.
A spokesman for China's foreign ministry appealed to Washington to negotiate but could not confirm reports the two sides were setting up talks. Beijing accused the United States of starting a trade war. "The US gas industry will be much harder hit by this as China imports only a small volume whereas US suppliers see China as a major future market".
Full lists of USA products subject to different levels of additional tariffs are available on the website of the Ministry of Finance. Mr Trump is aiming to reduce his country's $375.6 billion trade deficit in goods - the gap between imports and exports - with China.