China Prepared for Long Trade War With U.S., State Media Says

08 August, 2018, 21:03 | Author: Kevin Carter
  • Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media caption The'danger of a US-China trade war

After a weekend of claims by US President Donald Trump that he has the upper hand in the trade war with China, Beijing responded through state media by saying the nation is ready to withstand the economic fallout.

The full lists of products being considered for 5%, 10%, 20% and 25% retaliatory tariffs can be found here (in Chinese).

Already, the trade war has begun to take a toll: For instance, China has lost its status as the world's second-largest stock market, falling behind Japan, The Financial Times reported on Friday.

"The implementation date will be subject to the actions of the US, and China reserves the right to continue introducing other countermeasures".

Trump has said he is determined to reduce the large United States trade deficit with China.

The announcement came after the Office of the United States Trade Representative announced earlier this week that it was considering increasing the proposed additional duty on $200 billion of Chinese products from 10 percent to 25 percent.

The US economy is more insulated from trade concerns, but Chinese leaders have retaliated strategically, targeting products made in Republican districts and final goods, like soybeans, that can be purchased elsewhere.

China's surplus with the USA swelled to a record in June as exports continued to rise, though signs of front-loading orders suggest the spike may have been a one-off.

Timing will depend on the actions of the United States, the Chinese Commerce Ministry said in a separate statement. Another $16 billion in levies will likely follow in the coming days or weeks.

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China's decision to threaten $60 billion of US goods is the first time this year that Beijing has not tried to match D.C.'s tariffs dollar for dollar. The Chinese side seem to be seeking to match that ratio with the new proposals.

In addition, Beijing announced on Friday that it would add duties ranging from 5 to 25 per cent on an additional US$60 billion in USA goods if the Trump administration went ahead with similar action, warning that further countermeasures were ready at any time.

Within hours, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow promised Trump wouldn't back down until China changed its trade practices.

There is no evidence, however, that the Chinese government is financing such an advertising campaign in the US. "We are using them to negotiate fair trade deals", Trump said.

"Tariffs are working far better than anyone ever anticipated", Trump tweeted, citing losses in the Chinese market. Wang said on Friday they did not get into details.

The spokesperson pointed out that, because the United States had repeatedly escalated the situation in disregard of the interests of enterprises and consumers of both countries, China was forced to take the countermeasures to protect national dignity and its people's interests, defend free trade and multilateral mechanisms, and safeguard the common interests of all countries in the world.

In another tweet, he said: "Tariffs will make our country much richer than it is today".

The market is not large by value compared with approximately $12 billion of U.S. crude that came to China previous year, but LNG imports could shoot up as Beijing forges ahead with its plan to switch millions of households to the fuel away from coal.

"The Chinese are also coping by lowering the rate of the yuan, while the United States can look towards countries in Southeast Asia as replacements for its imports, so it's not a big issue".


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