China's exports, imports slowed sharply in August

Ivan Schwartz
September 8, 2018

Trump said on Friday he's willing to slap tariffs on an additional $267 billion in Chinese goods, on top of duties of $200 billion in imports is already considering. To a certain extent it's going to be up to China.

Sherill Mosee, founder of MinkeeBlue, a Philadelphia company that makes travel and work bags, said that her four-year-old business will probably have to suspend operations if the tariffs hit and the administration starts taxing imported Chinese luggage and handbags.

The administration could decide to begin taxing the imports equal to almost 40pc of all the goods China sold the United States previous year after a public comment period ends Thursday.

In June, Trump imposed 25% tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods, mostly industrial machinery and intermediate electronics parts, including semiconductors.

They will "take place very soon, depending on what happens", he said about the new tariffs, in comments made to reporters while aboard Air Force One en route to Fargo, North Dakota.

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The United States buys about 20% of China's exports, but trade has shrunk over the past decade as a share of the Chinese economy.

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Mr Trump has boasted that trade wars are "easy to win" and warned he would hit virtually all Chinese imports if Beijing does not back down and take steps to reduce its US$335 billion surplus with the US. Both countries have already slapped levies on $50 billion of each other's exports, and China promised on Thursday to respond to any United States escalation with "necessary countermeasures". USA stocks erased gains after his trade-war rhetoric and headed for their first weekly decline in a month. "The trade wars only serve as a catalyst for the turning of the cycle".

Talk of the bonus $267bn tariff package comes as the White House has yet to settle all of the specifics of the planned $200bn tariff prospoals - which, as we said, would follow up that earlier $50bn package. The public consultations ended yesterday.

Most comments were from companies seeking to remove products from the tariff list, arguing there were few, if any alternative sources and the duties would cause financial hardship.

In short, the White House is mulling slapping tariffs on $200bn of Chinese kit imported into the States - and the Command-in-Chief is suggesting ballooning that figure to $467bn. "It's just another indication we're not out of the woods yet", she said.

Specifically, Kudlow said, the United States was seeking "zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers, zero subsidies, stop the IP theft, stop the technology transfer, allow Americans to own their own companies".

Other reports by GizPress

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