Trump escalates trade war with China and threatens ANOTHER $100 billion in tariffs after Beijing hits American soy and airplanes with tit-for-tat levies
北京以牙还牙 中美贸易战升级 特朗普威胁加征1000亿美元的关税
By David Martosko, U.s. Political Editor For Dailymail.com
Published: 01:09 BST, 6 April 2018 | Updated: 10:06 BST, 6 April 2018
President Donald Trump added a new layer of pressure in his budding Beijing trade war Thursday evening, telling U.S. officials to consider levying another $100 billion in tariffs on goods from China.
The threat now triples the amount of leverage the president is trying to create, following an announcement earlier in the week of $50 billion in planned tariffs against the world's other preeminent economic power.
China responded with a tit-for-tat trans-Pacific scowl of its own, announcing a 25 per cent tariff package focused on agriculture, aerospace and other products U.S. companies send to China. Beef, soy and cotton would be hardest hit if the tariffs were to go into place.
Republican lawmakers from Western and Midwestern states have begun to tell the White House that they fear a big hit to U.S. farm exports.
Trump said in a statement Thursday evening that his latest proposed tariffs came 'in light of China's unfair retaliation.'
He also said U.S. Trade Representative Andy Lighthizer had determined China 'has repeatedly engaged in practices to unfairly obtain America's intellectual property.'
That's a reference to an ongoing 'Section 301' investigation that led to the first round of tariff proposals.
The probe concluded that China systematically tries to unfairly acquire U.S. intellectual property by requiring that Americans doing business there agree to joint ventures with Chinese nationals and transfering key technology to them.
China denies it all.
But the Trump administration is signaling that it's taking a long view, betting that Beijing has more skin in the game than Washington and would be more significantly hurt if America – its biggest export market – were suddenly more costly.
The president added Thursday that he has instructed Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue 'to use his broad authority to implement a plan to protect our farmers and agricultural interests' from unfair trade practices.
'I will never allow unfair trade practices to undermine American interests,' he said.
Wall Street has alternatively panicked and deep-breathed through a week-long Sino-American tussle.
In Wednesday's trading the Dow Jones Industrial Average started hundreds of points down due to losses in overnight futures, but rebounded by day's end.
Late Thursday after Trump's latest announcement, Dow futures dropped by 400 points in advance of Friday trading.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters that afternoon that investors 'may have a little bit of short-term pain but we're certainly going to have long-term success.'
This year the markets have appeared to be playing dice with house money, swinging more than 3,000 points from high to low – representing more than 11 per cent of the Dow's valuation.
Tuesday's U.S. list of planned targets for tariffs was 43 pages long, running the gamut from medical supplies and television sets to cars and chemicals.
Beijing shoved back hard with a smaller, more targetst list including U.S.-sourced soybeans, beef and airplanes.
Beijing took less than 11 hours to respond, a speed that led to a steep selloff in global markets.
Still, Trump insisted Wednesday that '[w]e are not in a trade war with China.
'[T]hat war was lost many years ago by the foolish, or incompetent, people who represented the U.S.,' he tweeted.
'Now we have a Trade Deficit of $500 Billion a year, with Intellectual Property Theft of another $300 Billion. We cannot let this continue!'
He added two hours later in another tweet: 'When you’re already $500 Billion DOWN, you can’t lose!'
Neither the U.S. nor the Chinese tariffs have actually gone into effect, leaving open the possibility that the Trump administration is trying to establish a bargaining position for a future negotiation.
'I would anticipate,' Sanders told reporters, 'that if there are no changes to the behavior of China and they don't stop the unfair trade practices, then we would move forward' with tariffs.
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Wednesday morning on CNBC that months of economic diplomacy were still ahead.
'Think about it: Even shooting wars end with negotiations,' he said.
'The president is a life-long deal maker. This isn't the first deal he's gone into. It isn't the first controversy he's gone into, and I doubt that it will be the last one.'
And White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow told a Fox Business Network audience that Tuesday's tariff announcements were 'just the first proposals.'
'I doubt if there would be any concrete actions for several months. We'll see how that plays out. Nothing concrete has actually happened,' he said.
U.S.-made goods that appear to face added tariffs in China would include Tesla electric cars, Ford's Lincoln auto models, Gulfstream jets made by General Dynamics and Brown-Forman Corp's Jack Daniel's whiskey.
China's list struck key agricultural commodities produced in states from Iowa to Texas that voted for Trump in the 2016 presidential election.
The U.S. targeted products that benefit from Chinese industrial policy, including its 'Made in China 2025' initiative to replace advanced technology imports with domestic products in strategic industries such as advanced IT and robotics.
But Reuters reported that Beijing's appears 'aimed at inflicting political damage' by targeting market sectors based in parts of the U.S. from which the president draws his support.
clg7582, Toronto, Canada, 1 day ago
Good luck world. There's a mad man on the loose.
Villain1874, Villain Park, United Kingdom, 1 day ago
Trump is stupid the world is changing and some countries are willing to stand up to America now... He says America can win a trade war i have my doubts, he better hope China doesnt call its debts in... This really has the potential to get very messy...