U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports take effect

China rejects 'blackmail' on eve of US tariff hike

China rejects 'blackmail' on eve of US tariff hike

The trade war between the USA and other major economies escalated on Friday after Washington and Beijing launched punitive import tariffs on $34bn (£25.7bn) worth of each other's goods.

The Asian giant is already expected to cancel American soybean imports due to the 25% tariff on the legume and, according to Bloomberg, has already purchased 19 cargoes from Brazil. Both the U.S. and China imposed punitive tariffs on each other's exports today in what Beijing calls "the biggest trade war in economic history".

Touching on China's massive trade surpluses with the United States, Trump told his audience, "They've been killing us".

"Increased tensions in the US-China economic relationship will negatively impact ... operations in China", William Zarit, chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China, said in a statement Friday.

President Trump, on Thursday, warned there is more to come, with tariffs on more than $500 billion of goods possible in subsequent rounds.

China, saying USA officials have violated World Trade Organization rules, said it had no choice but to respond with tariffs of its own.

The president's tariffs, the PIIE's researchers conclude, are "a prime example of 20th century tools aimed at the knowledge-embodying trade flows of the 21st century".

A spokesperson at China's Ministry of Commerce said Friday that while the Asian giant had refused to "fire the first shot", it was being forced to respond after the US had "launched the largest trade war in economic history".

Behind the trade war, there is conflict within the Trump administration.

When Donald Trump became US President he promised to "Make America Great Again".

The report, which shows that unemployment has dropped, also included some numbers that might not be worth the all-caps tweet, including slowed hiring in small businesses and a lack of qualified applicants in some fields, owing, possibly, to wage stagnation.

Trump has enraged such US allies as the European Union, Canada and Mexico by hitting them - and just about everyone else - with a 25 percent tariff on imported steel and a 10 percent tariff on imported aluminum.

Retaliatory measures by China also include taxes on imports of a variety of U.S. dairy products. "Farmers want trade, they don't want aid".

China's Premier Li Keqiang said on a visit to Sofia that "A trade war benefits no-one because it hurts free trade and the multilateral process".

He also acknowledged the multi-hundred billion dollar US trade deficit with China.

Hours before Washington's deadline for the tariffs to take effect, US President Donald Trump upped the ante on its largest trading partner, warning that the United States may ultimately target over $500 billion worth of Chinese goods, or roughly the total amount of US imports from China a year ago.

The U.S. officially implemented tariffs on Chinese imports, to which China immediately retaliated to with levies of its own. The implementation of new US duties on these products will impact companies from outside China, including the U.S.

Trump's protectionism has "already caused criticisms and worries across the board", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang told reporters.

The opening shots were fired just after midnight, when the Trump administration imposed a 25 percent tariff on $34 billion of imports from China, and Beijing promptly retaliated with duties on an equal amount of American products.

Washington has strained relations with potential allies in its dispute with Beijing by raising import duties on steel, aluminum and autos from Europe, Canada, Mexico and Japan.

The tariffs would mark a significant escalation in the trade dispute between the world's two biggest economies. Trump has threatened to hit back with vehicle tariffs of 20%, which would be highly damaging for the German auto industry. "So we have 50 plus 200 plus nearly 300".

These practices include cyber-theft and coercing American companies into transferring their technology to Chinese partners as a condition of access to China's market.

As the tariffs approached, the U.S. central bank warned the impending trade battle was beginning to darken the otherwise blue skies of the robust American economy, now in its 10th year of recovery.

The official China Daily newspaper accused the Trump administration of "behaving like a gang of hoodlums".

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