USA may list tariffs on $200 billion more Chinese products

Trump's Zero Tariff Solution

Investors fear an escalating trade war between the world's two biggest economies could hit global growth.

The office of US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has released a list of Chinese products, running to nearly 200 pages, that will potentially be hit with a 10 per cent import tax as early as September. China has vowed to retaliate dollar-for-dollar to any further US tariffs.

All told, Trump has threatened eventually to slap tariffs on up to $550 billion in Chinese imports - more than China actually exported to the United States past year - if Beijing won't relent to USA pressure and continues to retaliate.

The list includes hundreds of food products as well as tobacco, coal, chemicals and tyres, dog and cat food, and consumer electronics. These tactics include the outright theft of trade secrets, government subsidies to homegrown tech firms and demands that USA and other foreign companies hand over technology if they want access to China's vast market.

The news sent stocks tumbling, with China's markets leading the declines, and prompted a senior Chinese commerce ministry official to warn that the United States was harming the global trade order.

The Trump administration's tariff hike on medical equipment, electronics and other goods from China apply to exports made by USA or European companies as well as Chinese suppliers.

Prior to the first round of United States tariffs against China, UBS said negotiations between the two countries looked promising.

Pompeo speaks with Russian FM on Trump-Putin meeting
Trump and Putin are set to meet July 16 in Helsinki, Finland, for their first formal bilateral meeting. The congressmen also met their counterparts in both houses of the Russian parliament.

US Senate Finance Committe chairman Orrin Hatch labelled the move as "reckless", while the US retail industry leaders assocation immediately condemned the move, saying the "the President has broken his promise".

The American president told reporters that tariffs on an additional $16 billion in Chinese goods are set to take effect in two weeks.

He said one has shifted final assembly of goods to a newly created American unit. "Unfortunately, China has not changed its behavior - behavior that puts the future of the US economy at risk".

Initiating the latest tariffs as a supplemental action means they could be implemented before September, pending the results of a hearing on August 20-23.

Beijing, meanwhile, has unveiled measures to help Chinese companies absorb the USA trade blows, pledging to funnel money collected from its own import levies to firms and workers tangled in the escalating trade war.

"It looks like the USA just took the scale of the trade frictions to another level", Li said at a forum in Beijing.

"China has no option but to fight fire with fire".

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