Trump Bolsters Review Panel To Limit Foreign Tech Investments

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"We're going to treat China the way we're going to treat other people, and to the extent that we're anxious about transactions, we will block them, Mnuchin said on CNBC on Wednesday". In response, China is prepared the same day to slap tariffs on billions in US exports, including soybeans - a direct threat to Trump supporters in America's heartland.

US President Donald Trump has suggested that his administration might back away from previously announced plans to impose limits on Chinese investment in US technology companies and high-tech exports to China, instead choosing to call upon the US Congress to act. The president has threatened to impose an estimated $450 billion in tariffs on Beijing in an effort to reverse what he has labeled as bad trade deals with China. On Tuesday, the House bill was approved by a margin of 400 to 2. Tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese products are scheduled to take effect July 6, with up to anadditional $416 billion possible in subsequent months.

The Treasury Department has recommended that Trump use the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), whose authority would be enhanced by new legislation in Congress, to control investment deals. But major indexes closed lower after White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told Fox Business Network that the CFIUS decision did not represent a more conciliatory approach to China trade issues.

The measure gives the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States more power to review sensitive investments involving China, Russia and state sponsors or terrorism, allows reviews of land purchases near USA military installations and ports and could stop key technology from being exported to China and other countries.

Just last week, the president threatened to impose tariffs on nearly all Chinese goods shipped to the United States, a move that reflected Navarro's enduring influence.

President Donald Trump's shift on the market-moving issue came after a global stock selloff Monday triggered by an exchange of hawkish new trade threats between the world's two largest economies. At the end of its review, the president can block proposed investments.

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Now the Trump administration is trying to force China to change its ways.

James Lewis, who studies technology policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said he foresees no quick resolution to the dispute. The Chinese don't want to play by the rules.

Officials had considered limiting Chinese-owned companies from acquiring more than 25 percent of American firms that own sensitive technologies, and reaction to the easing from one prominent Republican was negative.

Xiao Yaqing, the chairman of the Asset Supervision and Administration Commission, the regulator of the biggest state industrial conglomerates, said the Chinese government would not be angry "as long as they don't discriminate against us".

"Should Congress fail to pass strong FIRRMA legislation that better protects the crown jewels of American technology and intellectual property from transfers and acquisitions that threaten our national security - and future economic prosperity - I will direct my Administration to deploy new tools, developed under existing authorities, that will do so globally", Trump said in a statement.

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