China vows retaliation for latest United States tariff threat

Blanche Robertson
July 12, 2018

China slammed the latest United States tariff threat as a "totally unacceptable" escalation of their trade battle and vowed Wednesday to protect its "core interests".

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer writes that these new tariffs come as a response to how Beijing retaliated to the initial tariffs - quickly implementing matching tariffs on the same amount of US exports to China.

President Donald Trump reacts as he poses for a family photo at the start of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels, July 11, 2018.

"Despite the serious economic consequences of ever-increasing tariffs, today there are no serious trade discussions occurring between the USA and China, no plans for trade negotiations anytime soon, and seemingly little action toward a solution", Brady said.

The White House did not respond to ABC News' request for comment.

It also includes consumer goods ranging from vehicle tyres, furniture, wood products, handbags and suitcases, to dog and cat food, baseball gloves, carpets, doors, bicycles, skis, golf bags, toilet paper and beauty products. These tactics include the outright theft of trade secrets, government subsidies to homegrown tech firms and demands that US and other foreign companies hand over technology if they want access to China's vast market.

But China has rebuffed US complaints and denied any harm was done to USA companies, and instead retaliated "without any global legal basis or justification", Lighthizer said.

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This dispute comes alongside the US confrontation with other allies and major trading partners including Canada, Mexico and the European Union, for the steep tariffs imposed on steel and aluminum.

This most recent maneuver follows a threat President Trump made last month, and comes days after the USA and China imposed tit-for-tat tariffs on more than $30 billion in goods.

The US Chamber of Commerce has supported Trump's domestic tax cuts and efforts to reduce regulation of businesses, but it has been critical of Trump's aggressive tariff policies.

Hatch said he's "mostly concerned about some of the things the president is maybe planning to do".

Investors said trade war worries may slip to the background as investors begin to focus more closely on second-quarter earnings over the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said the effects of the tariffs have been "very, very detrimental" and that he's "very, very nervous about it".

"While weaker overseas growth, stronger United States dollars, and trade risks warrant some caution, consensus is likely too conservative considering rising disposable income (i.e., tax savings and expanding labor market) and lower household expenses (e.g., declining cost of goods/services including utilities)". I get so confused these days. Instead, the outlet was told to only share trade stories from Xinhua, the state news agency.

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