China imposes retaliatory tariffs on $60bn in US goods

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China Tuesday announced tariffs on United States goods worth $60 billion in retaliation for President Donald Trump's decision to slap duties on $200 billion in Chinese products next week.

If the administration pursues what it calls "phase three" of the tariff strategy, it would raise the total value of affected Chinese goods to $517 billion - covering almost everything China sells the United States. Beijing is still ready to negotiate an end to the trade tensions, it said.

Apple had feared that US President Donald Trump's proposed tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods would affect several of its products, including the Apple Watch, AirPods, and adapters and chargers for a large number of products.

Mr. Trump also accused China of "actively trying to impact and change our election by attacking our farmers, ranchers and industrial workers due to their loyalty to me".

The Trump administration announced the tariffs on some 5,000 Chinese-made goods will start at 10 percent, beginning Monday.

The US imported around US$500 billion worth of products from China a year ago, compared to US$130 billion in US goods imported by the Asian country.

Apple Inc. said last month the proposed duties on $200 billion cover a wide range of products used in its United States operations.USA stock futures edged lower, Asian equities slumped and European shares fluctuated amid investor concerns a heightened trade war will crimp corporate profits and undermine economic growth.

After a thorough study, the USTR concluded that China is engaged in numerous unfair policies and practices relating to United States technology and intellectual property? such as forcing United States companies to transfer technology to Chinese counterparts, he said.

Handbags, rice and textiles will be included, but some items expected to be targeted such as smart watches and high chairs have been excluded.

"Unfortunately, China has been unwilling to change its policies involving the unfair acquisition of USA technology and intellectual property".

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Officials said they wanted to shield consumer goods from the taxes as much as possible.

Another critic of escalating the trade war via tariffs was the head of the China-based American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham), who said Washington's latest action would hurt, not help, USA businesses operating in China.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin invited top Chinese officials to a new round of discussions last week, but no meeting has been scheduled.

Earlier in the day, China said it was forced to take "synchronous countermeasures", following the USA decision, indicating that another round of the trade war with Washington was about to begin.

"History is very, very clear that countries that pursue the most open markets are the ones that prosper the most and whose citizens' income increases the most", Smith said, adding that "mercantilism does not work".

"They also know that I am the one that knows how to stop it", Trump said in a Tweet.

"President Trump's decision.is reckless and will create lasting harm to communities across the country", said Dean Garfield, president of the Information Technology Industry Council, which represents major tech firms. It has weakened by about 6.0 percent since mid-June, offsetting the 10 percent tariff rate by a considerable margin.

Apple's smartwatch has been exempt from the new round of USA tariffs.

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND): "The reckless escalation of the administration's trade war is having serious consequences for rural America, which is already suffering from the uncertainty and low commodity prices caused by the disruptions to our markets", Heitkamp said.

The US president ramped up the commercial crusade against China, issuing a new set of tariffs on nearly 6,000 items, ranging from garlic to steel.

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