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European Union says U.S. tariffs on China 'very unfortunate'

18 September 2018

The Trump administration is imposing tariffs on $200 billion United States more in Chinese goods starting next week, escalating a trade war between the world's two biggest economies and raising prices on consumer goods ranging from handbags to bicycle tires. "He's given us some good advice".

U.S. President Donald Trump chose to begin taxing the imports - equal to almost 40 per cent of goods China sold the United States a year ago - after a public comment period.

Trump kicked off his trade war with China in March, imposing higher tariffs after an investigation by Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer had found that China used foreign ownership restrictions to require tech transfers from United States to Chinese companies, as well as conducting espionage to acquire intellectual property. "As such this is a real ratcheting up of trade tensions that certainly heightens the risks for global and United States growth".

China wants talks based on 'mutual trust, ' said a foreign ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang. "No one will emerge victorious from this counter-productive cycle".

As Beijing runs out of US goods for retaliation, American companies say regulators are starting to disrupt their operations.

While there are measures China can take to retaliate, it is limited by the imbalance between its exports to the USA and its imports from the U.S., which amount to only about $US130 billion a year.

"China has openly stated that they are actively trying to impact and change our election by attacking our farmers, ranchers and industrial workers due to their loyalty to me", Trump wrote.

Speaking Sunday at an economics forum, Lou Jiwei, a former finance minister and chairman of China's sovereign wealth fund, said Beijing should disrupt supply chains of American companies that rely on China's vast manufacturing industries, the website Sina.com reported.

Trump threatened that nations that don't make "fair" deals withe US with getting "Tariffed" on Monday morning prepared to slap the trade rival with the expected $200 billion in penalties.

The products spared included consumer electronics like smart watches and Bluetooth devices, child safety products such as high chairs, auto seats and playpens, and certain health-and-safety products such as bicycle helmets, the officials said.

"China has had many opportunities to fully address our concerns", Trump said.

In May, in fact, it looked briefly as if Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He had brokered a truce built around a Chinese offer to buy enough American farm products and liquefied natural gas to put a dent in the trade deficit. But Trump quickly backed away from the truce. "It has to take care of our workers".

By expanding the list to $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, Trump risks spreading the pain to ordinary Americans.

-China trade spat that has been ongoing for months.

Former European Union trade commissioner Peter Mandelson told Bloomberg TV that the Trump administration appeared to be trying to change Chinese industrial policy, and was unlikely to succeed.

Beijing has said it would also unleash "qualitative" measures against the United States, which some American firms have interpreted as heightened regulations and stalled visas.

European Union says U.S. tariffs on China 'very unfortunate'