The United States has chose to impose tariffs on $200 billion worth of imports from China after efforts to negotiate a solution to the trade dispute failed to reach an agreement, senior administration officials said on Tuesday.
In the case of the China-U.S. squabble, Trump imposed aluminum and steel tariffs in early March in order to protect those American industries.
The White House says the tariffs are a response to unfair trade practices by China. Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against US products.
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, responded to Lighthizer's announcement with dismay.
Trump said last week the United States may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese goods - roughly the total amount of US imports from China past year. The first round of tariffs covered Chinese products ranging from farming plows to machine tools and communications satellites. Hours later, China came out with more tariffs, this time taking aim at Boeing planes.
President Donald Trump last month threatened additional tariffs against China if it retaliated.
The US has ramped up its trade war with China, outlining a list of $200bn (£150bn) worth of additional products it plans to place tariffs on.
The official said the decision was not final and that the list of Chinese goods would not become final until after the public had a chance to comment.
"We encourage companies to optimize the structure of imports, increase imports of soybean, agricultural products, as well as seafood and cars from other countries and regions", said the ministry, explaining that the measures are aimed at mitigating the effects of the trade war with the United States. But Trump hasn't backed down, arguing that China's unfair trading practices are hurting American workers.
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