Thursday, 24 January, 2019

Lobsters latest target as US, China trade war escalates

Nellie Chapman | 16 June, 2018, 22:13

China will impose additional 25 percent tariffs on 659 USA goods worth $50 billion in response to the US' plan to levy tariffs on Chinese imports.

The White House on Friday announced it is slapping tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods in response to alleged intellectual property theft, another escalation in President Donald Trump's trade-related acts against allies and rivals alike.

The initial list mostly targets Chinese goods that fall under the "Made in China 2025" initiative, or other Chinese government-backed programs aimed at advancing Chinese industry.

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) released a list of products imported from China that will be subject to additional tariffs.

The Chinese government has made a decision to impose additional duties of 25 per cent on 659 items of USA products worth about Dollars 50 billion, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

"The United States has kept changing its mind and now launched a trade war", China's Commerce Ministry said in a statement. (ZTCOY.PK) In April, the USA banned ZTE from buying American technology for seven years, effectively putting the company out of business. The Chinese list includes agricultural products, automobiles, and aquatics. "It's appropriate", US Trade Rep. Robert Lighthizer said Friday on the Fox Business Network.

Mr Trump has also previously warned of "additional tariffs" should China hit back.

China has published its own list of threatened tariffs on $50 billion in US goods, including soybeans, aircraft, and autos, and has said it would hit back if Washington followed up with further measures.

Donald Trump has warned that if China retaliates, the U.S. will impose even more tariffs.

"The U.S. has ignored China's resolute opposition and solemn representation, and has insisted on adopting behaviours that violate WTO rules", China's commerce ministry said. The affected nations have appealed to the World Trade Organization (WTO), demanding compensation over what they call a "protectionist measure".

Washington has also completed a second list of possible tariffs on another US$100 billion in Chinese goods, in the expectation that China will respond to the initial United States tariff list in kind, sources told Reuters.

Earlier on Friday, China vowed to do just that, saying it would strike back, just hours before Trump's statement.

"We continue to encourage both governments to work together through negotiation to resolve issues between these two important economies", a Ford spokesman said. The EU, along with Canada and Mexico, will impose retaliatory tariffs on US goods, and file dispute settlement cases with the World Trade Organization in Geneva. The United States now dominates those industries, but Chinese government support could make it hard for USA companies to compete.

The president has been under pressure from USA lawmakers over his decision to soften a penalty on Chinese telecom-equipment maker ZTE Corp.

"The Chinese side firmly opposes that", it said.

In a statement yesterday, the President said American trade with China "has been very unfair for a very long time", and insisted the new rules were created to punish China for the "theft" of American intellectual property.

"Trade conflict. will lead to serious consequences for economic growth and job creation and hurt those that are most vulnerable across the globe", said Devry Boughner Vorwerk, a vice president at Cargill.