China warns US 'opening fire' on world with tariff threats


China is retaliating against the United States after the Trump administration chose to impose a 25 percent tariff on $34 billion worth of Chinese products, starting Friday.

Hopes are dwindling for the world's two biggest economies to reach a breakthrough this week before Washington starts charging tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese imports.

China's foreign ministry said Tuesday that Beijing won't hesitate to retaliate against USA tariffs and escalate a trade war with Washington if tensions over economic negotiations with the Trump administration continue to rise. However payment for crude oil sold to China would be in the USA dollar, they said.

USA companies ranging from whiskey distilleries to automakers like Ford and Tesla could be hit if China ramps up retaliatory measures.

"The US' measures are essentially attacking the global supply and value chain. Simply put, the United States is opening fire on the whole world, and also firing at itself".

"China will not bow down in the face of threats and blackmail and will not falter from its determination to defend free trade and the multilateral system". "As long as the United States issues a so-called tariff list, China will take necessary measures to firmly protect its legitimate interests", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a daily news briefing.

"We will continue to assess the potential impact of the USA -initiated trade war on companies and will help companies mitigate possible shocks".

U.S. tariffs meant to punish China for allegedly unfair trading practices are due to take effect on Friday.

They say China's decision in May to lower tariffs on imported cars will make little difference because imports make up such a small part of the market.

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Both sides have threatened to impose similarly sized tariffs on 6 July but because of the 12-hour time difference, the Chinese tariffs on U.S. imports ranging from soybean to stainless steel pipes will take effect earlier.

Trump has accused China of unfairly acquiring USA technology through coercion and theft and limiting market access for US finance and technology firms - claims that China denies.

"While the Trump administration is anxious about gains and losses, Chinese people have unfaltering confidence in China's future".

While Trump touts announcements of jobs created in steel plants due to the tariffs, manufacturing industries warn that many more jobs will be lost in companies producing autos, auto parts, appliances and other goods that depend on imported components.

"I'm afraid not, for now", said Tu Xinquan, a trade expert at Beijing's University of International Business and Economics, who has advised the Chinese government.

According to the report, the Chinese authorities will allow its tariffs against USA products to go into effect starting at 12 a.m. Friday. The South China Morning Post said China is likely to cancel orders for 1.1 million tons of soybeans from the us this year.

Tensions are high between the two countries over the threat of tariffs.

Therefore, to many, the trade war the United States sees intent on initiating is the country's strategy to keep China on the back foot so that it will not develop as fast as it otherwise would, and thus unable to challenge the dominant role of the USA in the global economic order.