Trump in tariff threat

by Sophie Craig April 9, 2018, 0:43
Trump in tariff threat

"Rather than remedy its misconduct, China has chosen to harm our farmers and manufacturers", Trump said, adding that he had instructed the USA trade representative to determine whether tariffs on an additional $100 billion in goods were warranted and, "if so, to identify the products upon which to impose such tariffs".

China warned on Friday it was fully prepared to respond with a "fierce counter strike" of fresh trade measures if the United States follows through on President Donald Trump's threat to slap tariffs on an additional $100 billion of Chinese goods.

China's Commerce Ministry spokesman, Gao Feng, calling the U.S. action "extremely mistaken" and unjustified, said the spat was a struggle between unilateralism and multilateralism and that no negotiations were likely in the current circumstances.

We can't overstate our concern about what the impact will be of a USA trade war with foreign nations - in particular, with China - on agriculture states like Iowa. In response, China on Sunday slapped tariffs on $3 billion on agricultural products from the USA including hog parts, wine, fruit and nuts. Placing duties on these goods could inflict significant pain on Chinese manufacturers, but also on USA consumers, and also the American, South Korean and Japanese suppliers who provide components to China-based contract manufacturers like Foxconn.

The ravaging trade war, which was unleashed by the USA in March, when in a shock announcement President Donald Trump said the U.S. would set a new tariff of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium imports. "There is the potential of a trade war", said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Given that a trade war with such a major trading partner is without precedent in modern times, we don't really know what it would look like. The Dow was down 700 points late in the day.

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Some Russian lawmakers have already spoken about a possible " asymmetric response " that could target the USA both politically and economically.

President Moon Jae-in said growing trade protectionism and trade conflict between the United States and China could hurt the Korean economy and he urged the country to prepare.

"I'm not saying there won't be a little pain", Trump said Friday during an interview on 77 WABC Radio's "Bernie & Sid in the Morning" program. There are compelling economic reasons for the United States and China to avoid imposing extensive tariffs on bilateral trade, but both sides face tricky domestic political constraints.

If the USA side disregards opposition from China and the worldwide community and insists on carrying out unilateralism and trade protectionism, the Chinese side will follow through, at any costs, till the end.

"The American agricultural sector is quite influential in the Congress", said Wang Yong, a professor of economics at Peking University, explaining why China has targeted farm products such as soybeans with possible retaliatory tariffs. The Chinese appeal came after it filed two complaints at the World Trade Organisation claiming the United States has violated global trading rules, a charge the White House dismissed. Other U.S. carmakers such as General Motors and Ford Motor also manufacture in China.

However, he said the White House is willing to negotiate and is in regular contact with Chinese officials.

Trade wars, by contrast, are sure to cause economic harm in the short run - including higher prices to consumers, lost sales to farms and factories, and a drag on the US economy. "If we can get those issues resolved positively, there's no damage to the American economy, it's all pluses".


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