Trump Confirms $34B Tariffs on China, Possible $516B More


It turns up the heat in an increasingly bitter trade war between the United States and its biggest trading partner.

China said today it was "forced to take necessary countermeasures", after Washington imposed tariffs on billions of dollars of Chinese imports at the stroke of midnight.

With the USA on Friday hitting China with tariffs on $34 billion in imports, and China immediately striking back with equivalent levies, the Sino-American trade war is officially on.

President Donald Trump says he has tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars in more Chinese goods ready in his pocket - if it comes to that - while China says the US has launched the biggest trade war in history.

Companies worry the spiraling dispute could chill global economic growth.

"We continue to believe that solutions can be found that do not involve tariffs and a trade war that will hurt all of rural America", Armstrong said.

From Air Force One, on his way to a rally in Montana, Trump said the United States is ready to target an additional US$200 billion in Chinese imports - and then US$300 billion more - if Beijing refuses to yield to USA demands and continues to retaliate.

Adding to concerns this week was a leaked report suggesting Trump had asked his officials to look at pulling the U.S. out of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) altogether. However, if and when the war escalates, tariffs would go up on the daily necessities Americans have got used to buying cheap. The Office of U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer released the list of categories of products affected.

He described the potential escalation to reporters aboard Air Force One: "Thirty-four, and then you have another 16 in two weeks and then, as you know, we have 200 billion in abeyance and then after the 200 billion we have 300 billion in abeyance. OK?" The US trade deficit in goods with China ballooned to a record US$375.2 billion a year ago, stoking his ire.

Russian Federation says it has raised tariffs on some USA imports in response to the US move to impose tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum.

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Shaun Rein, managing director at the China Market Research Group in Shanghai, said the Chinese government's next play could be to stoke anti-American sentiments among consumers - similar to the boycotts it ordered previous year on South Korea's Lotte Group, which caused dozens of the company's convenience stores to shutter.

The president believes this is the best way to close the trade deficit between the United States and China.

Acadiana soybean farmers are bracing for the worst case scenario after China imposes tariffs on American products.

MSCI's main European Index edged 0.1 percent higher and held below a two-week high hit in the previous session amid hopes of a rapprochement between the USA and Europe on auto trade tariffs. "And the impact on USA business, in my estimation, will be substantial".

Ma Jun, a member of the monetary policy committee of the People's Bank of China, told Chinese media that the trade war is estimated to push down China's gross domestic product by 0.2 percentage point against a backdrop of a downturn in exports.

It has increased sharply since 2001 when China joined the World Trade Organization and started to significantly improve its economic position and relations worldwide.

"Its unruliness looks set to have a profoundly damaging impact on the global economic landscape in the coming decades, unless countries stand together to oppose it", the newspaper added.

Trump has for years slammed what he describes as Beijing's underhanded economic treatment of the United States in terms of trade, with the USA trade deficit in goods with China ballooning to a record $375.2 billion last year.

Canatella says he hopes the tariffs are resolved before harvest season starts in October. Mary Lovely, economics professor at Syracuse University, says that roughly 60 percent of U.S.