U.S. fires next shot in China trade war

In Hong Kong and China where many suppliers to US retailing giants are based shares of companies in affected sectors fell. — Reuters pic

China retaliated against the initial US tariffs with 25 per cent tariffs of its own on $50-billion of USA goods.

The Commerce Ministry said Tuesday that optical fiber preforms from the United States will face additional duties of 37.9 to 78.2 percent for five years.

Trump said last week the United States may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese goods - roughly the total amount of US imports from China past year.

Bloomberg first reported on Tuesday that the Trump administration was planning to release the list, citing two people familiar with the matter.

"As in the past, the United States is willing to engage in efforts that could lead to a resolution of our concerns about China's unfair trade practices and to China opening its market to USA goods and services", he said.

"Although I have supported the administration's targeted efforts to combat China's technology transfer regime, tonight's announcement appears reckless and is not a targeted approach", Hatch said in a statement.

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The additional USA tariffs, which will go through a two-month approval process including a public hearing, come after China retaliated in a tit-for-tat trade skirmish last week.

The president last month asked the U.S. Trade Representative's office to identify US$200 billion of Chinese goods that could be hit with 10 percent tariffs.

"For over a year, the Trump administration has patiently urged China to stop its unfair practices, open its market, and engage in true market competition", U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in announcing the proposed tariffs. Imposing taxes on another $200 billion worth of products will raise the costs of every day goods for American families, farmers, ranchers, workers, and job creators.

So far, Chinese officials have not backed off their promises to retaliate to any Trump tariff move.

"American families are the ones being punished".

The White House says the tariffs are a response to unfair trade practices by China.

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