Published: Sat, March 24, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

How Much Could Trump's Multibillion Tariffs Really Cost China?

How Much Could Trump's Multibillion Tariffs Really Cost China?

It is not yet clear if or when China will implement the tariffs in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's plans for tariffs on up to $60 billion in Chinese goods.

That measure had not targeted Chinese imports alone.

He will also direct Lighthizer to take action against China at the World Trade Organization, charging Beijing with preventing United States companies from licensing their technology in China. The action did not immediately impose any new tariffs, but within two weeks US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer is due to publish a list of the products that could be hit with tariffs.

"We have a tremendous intellectual property theft problem". "A number of participants reported about their conversations with business leaders around the country and reported that trade policy has become a concern", Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell said this week, while cautioning that trade issues haven't changed the Fed's outlook.

China is the largest foreign USA bond holder, with $1.17 trillion in holdings.

The United States today dragged China to the World Trade Organisation, accusing it of unfair technology practices that run counter to the WTO rules.

"Investors are rattled about the economic and inflation impacts of tariffs and a potential trade war", says Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate.com. U.S. Ambassador to China Terry Branstad was previously a long-serving governor of the farm state.

On Friday, the Chinese commerce ministry said China will levy duties on up to $3 billion of U.S. imports in response to the steel and aluminum tariffs, which appeared modest by comparison to the United States penalties.

U.S. efforts to boost exports of technology-based goods, begun under Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama, conflict with China's plan for state-led development of global competitors in fields from robotics to electric cars. The US concluded China engages in a range of violations, including policies that force American companies to transfer technology and the accessing of trade secrets through hacking, said Eissenstat. He added, however, that while the decision represents progress, talks with the US still need to go forward.

"China hopes the United States will pull back from the brink, make prudent decisions, and avoid dragging bilateral trade relations to a unsafe place". Reaction from United States industry groups sought to strike a balance, applauding the president for tackling the persistent drain of U.S. technology to Chinese competitors, but urging negotiations instead of tariffs.

China's Ministry of Commerce blasted the USA move as underscoring "typical unilateralism and trade protectionism" and said it would take action to protect the country's interests. Meanwhile, World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevedo called for cooler heads to prevail, saying in a statement that new trade barriers would "jeopardise the global economy".

Additionally, the government argued that the Trump administration's use of national security as the basis for tariffs on steel and aluminum was a smokescreen and the restrictions were economic-based.

The European Union, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, South Korea, Canada and Mexico will get initial exemptions from looming steel and aluminum tariffs from the Trump administration. China is the greatest U.S. agricultural export market with more than $21 billion in products sent there in 2016, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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