Published: Sat, March 10, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

China, Japan, South Korea bristle over US steel, aluminium tariffs

China, Japan, South Korea bristle over US steel, aluminium tariffs

The latest trade threat to China follows Mr Trump's announcement that the U.S. would raise steel and aluminium tariffs, prompting threats of retaliation from Europe and concern in Australia.

Trump also took to Twitter to say the USA had asked China to "develop a plan for the year of a One Billion Dollar reduction in their massive Trade Deficit with the United States".

The plan to impose tariffs of 25 per cent on imported steel and 10 per cent on aluminium has drawn a global backlash, especially from United States allies such as Canada, which supplies about 41 per cent of steel imports to the US. China accounts for only a small fraction of USA steel imports, but its massive industrial expansion has helped create a global glut of steel that has driven down prices.

New Zealand International Business Forum executive director Stephen Jacobi said he did not want to dismiss those impacts but with just $39m of steel and $22m of aluminium exported to the USA the bigger risk was the damage that the U.S. could do to the framework of the global trade network.

USA aircraft carrier the USS Carl Vinson and two US naval combat ships carrying 6,500 crew members departed Da Nang on Friday following an historic five-day port call. It's very important that there are advocates for this in the White House.

"Strong growth in US domestic demand should continue to pull in non-petroleum imports going forward", said Jay Bryson, global economist at Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The group also includes Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, India and Pakistan, and China has sought to use it to ensure security along its Central Asian border, for example, by holding joint anti-terrorism exercises.

"S.is a wanton attack on the multilateral trade system represented by the WTO and will surely have a grave impact on the normal worldwide trade order", Wang said.

"Recent developments may seem baffling to some people but are actually within the bounds of reason", Foreign Minister Wang Yi said during a press conference on Thursday.

State-run CCTV did not cover Trump's demand for tariffs on steel and aluminum imports in its main evening newscast.

Donald Trump has claimed America will not be hurt in a trade war over his steel tariff as he promised a "loving" approach to the issue.

Apple gets nearly $45 billion in annual revenue from China.

"China would have to make a justified and necessary response", he said.

"We continue to be of the view that the European Union should be excluded from these measures". "We can not allow this to happen as it has for many years!"

And the end result will be that countries "like us better, and they will respect us much more". The trade gap with Mexico narrowed to US$4.1 billion from US$5.4 billion in December.

Trade experts have said the stakes are high for New Zealand, with broader risks to exporters than just the direct impact on sales of steel and aluminium to the US.

Adding to the tensions over the tariffs, Trump doubled down on China, which he accuses of unfair trade practices. The outcome will only be harmful to others and the initiator.

Overall exports rose 44.5 percent in February from a year earlier and those to the USA surged 46.1 percent, customs data showed Thursday.

"I'll have a right to drop out countries or add countries", he said.

Senior foreign affairs officials from the four countries met late a year ago to revive talks between the four democracies on the basis of "shared values and principles", in a move widely viewed as responding to China's growing assertiveness.

Immediately on taking office in January 2017, Trump pulled the United States out of the completed but unratified Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal.

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