Only 4 Days in, China-US Trade War Escalates

Trump Administration Readies Tariffs On $200 Billion Of Chinese Imports

The move came just four days after the two countries imposed tit-for-tat tariffs of $34 billion on each other's products.

"It looks like the United States just took the scale of the trade frictions to another level", Li said at a forum in Beijing. However, because China exports more to the U.S. than it imports there are limits on the amount of tariffs Beijing can impose on American goods.

The tech sector, more broadly, will suffer from tariffs due to the nature and complexity of the worldwide supply chain that it relies on. "We have been very clear and detailed regarding the specific changes China should undertake", Lighthizer added. This has raised concerns that China could retaliate with non-tariff trade measures.

In Beijing, Li Chenggang, assistant minister at China's Commerce Ministry, said that the latest USA proposals would hurt both countries and pointed to declines in Chinese export growth and overseas investment to the United States in the first half of this year.

The Office of the US Trade Representative proposed 10 per cent tariffs Tuesday on a list of 6031 Chinese product lines.

Trump had threatened earlier that he would impose additional tariffs if Beijing retaliated with countermeasures. "There is no justification for such action".

The $200 billion far exceeds the total value of goods China imports from the United States, which means Beijing may need to think of creative ways to respond to such USA measures.

The initial US tariff list focused on Chinese industrial products in an attempt to limit the impact on American consumers.

He said: "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 US goods and services".

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"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", US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in announcing the proposed tariffs.

China has, in recent years, become a key export market for growing US energy exports.

While Chinese shares regained Wednesday's heavy losses, with the Shanghai Composite index rising 2.2 percent, the yuan fell against the dollar following the central bank's weakest daily fixing in almost a year and Washington's fresh tariff threats.

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.

'Tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese products amounts to another multibillion-dollar tax on American businesses and families, ' trade lawyer Scott Lincicome said.

US Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch described the move was "reckless". 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. "It will also result in retaliatory tariffs, further hurting American workers", a Chamber spokeswoman said.

Jack Gerard, Cal Dooley, and Edward R. Hamberger-the president and CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, president and CEO of the American Chemistry Council, and president and CEO of the Association of American Railroads, respectively-wrote in an opinion piece in the Washington Examiner published on Wednesday that the trade war is threatening the US economy and could add "hundreds of billions of dollars in potential costs for American businesses - costs that could ultimately be borne by consumers".

South Korea's government has weighed in this morning, warning that its exports could be hurt by the escalating dispute between Washington and Beijing.

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