Chinese exporters scramble on tariffs

US President Donald Trump and China counterpart Xi Jinping. A clash between two strongmen leaders running the two biggest economies could lay waste to stability in markets everywhere

US President Donald Trump and China counterpart Xi Jinping. A clash between two strongmen leaders running the two biggest economies could lay waste to stability in markets everywhere

President Donald Trump's hard line on trade with China has fueled fears of an economically-damaging trade war, while his swings from threat to praise have generated uncertainty among businesses.

With the threat of tariffs hanging over almost a third of China's exports to the United States, economists at Nomura say its companies may have front-loaded shipments early this year before any measures kick in.

"I'm proud to announce that we're getting along very well with respect to the whole very big negotiation that we're having with China", Trump told American workers at the White House today.

"The trade tension has not impacted on GDP growth yet ... and the trade data is still robust", said Ligang Liu, chief China economist at Citibank.

China's March trade surplus with the US fell to $15.32 billion, according to Reuters calculations based on official data, compared with $20.96 billion for February.

China's overall March imports grew 14.4 per cent from a year ago, beating analysts' forecast for 10.0 per cent growth, and compared with 6.3 per cent growth in February.

While China was busy selling more to the United States, it was buying more from other countries, and ran a $9.86 billion deficit with the rest of the world in the quarter.

In 2013-2016, China's final consumption contributed an average of 23.4 percent to world consumption growth, calculated with constant dollar prices, higher than 23 percent from the United States, 7.9 percent from the eurozone and 2.1 percent from Japan. "We hope that the United States will listen patiently to rational and pragmatic voices on the trade balance issue".

Will Beijing find different ways to harm the US economy?

"She will observe a military drill focused on testing the military's emergency response ability in harbour defence", said the report.

"China's economy entered 2018 at full throttle, undeterred by policy bumps along the way", said Frederic Neumann, cohead of Asian economics research at HSBC Holdings Hong Kong.

State media said the fleet review included 48 ships, among them China's sole operating aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, along with 76 helicopters, fighter jets and bombers, and more than 10,000 personnel, making it the largest since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949.

Chinese exporters supply most of the world's mobile phones, personal computers, televisions, toys and other light manufactured goods.

"Dangal has been a great success in China and if that is so we would like to expose the Chinese population to some more Indian movies".

Instead, the Trump administration wants Chinese leaders to address more basic structural issues that interfere with market forces, said the official.

Chinese purchases of those goods previous year totaled $3 billion, the ministry said.

"The US is a huge market and some of the companies, especially those less competitive, may be washed out", said Danny He, the founder of Alpha Lighting, a small LED maker in Dongguan with 100 workers.

"We have liberalized as you know all the business visa regimes for the Chinese investors to come".

During Trump's first year in office the surplus reached record highs - $375 billion by USA counting, or $276 billion according to Chinese data.

China exported $137.8 billion worth of high-tech products in the first quarter, up 20.5 percent on-year.

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