Economy

Donald Trump hikes tariffs on Chinese imports, as 'congenial' talks resume

Donald Trump hikes tariffs on Chinese imports, as 'congenial' talks resume”

China promised to respond in kind to new US tariffs that took effect Friday even as trade talks continued in Washington between Chinese trade representatives and their American counterparts.

China's Vice Premier Liu He gestures to U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer outside the office of the U.S. Trade Representative following a morning round of negotiatioons on the second day of last ditch trade talks in Washington, U.S., May 10, 2019.

The spat erupted as U.S. and Chinese negotiators were due to begin further talks in Washington aimed at resolving a dispute which has rocked financial markets and disrupted world trade.

The two countries are sparring over USA allegations Beijing steals technology and pressures companies to hand over trade secrets in a campaign to turn Chinese companies into world leaders in robotics, electric cars and other advanced industries.

The National Retail Foundation said it's concerned "we are shooting ourselves in the foot", while Sen.

Still, the Trump administration escalated the confrontation again after the Chinese delegation left town.

The higher duty rates imposed on Friday will hit a vast array of Chinese-made electrical equipment, machinery, auto parts and furniture.

The move came less than a day after Washington hit Chinese imports to the United States worth about $200 billion (€178 billion) annually.

Liu voiced a measured optimism on reaching a deal, but said there were "issues of principle" on which China would not back down.

"We were getting very close to a deal, then they started to renegotiate the deal", said Trump earlier in the day at the White House.

The U.S. -Chinese trade negotiations wrapped up before noon and the Chinese were preparing to leave.

But it could make it harder for USA firms to invest in China, block mergers and acquisitions or strictly enforce safety regulations on incoming goods. "Also, much easier & quicker to do", he said. Federal Register said the increased tariffs will be applied to USA -bound goods exported from China. China's Commerce Ministry said it would impose "necessary countermeasures" but gave no details.

"I don't think he understands that he's not a dictator", said Vilsack, who is now chief executive of the U.S. Dairy Export Council industry group. He said the earlier 10% increase was absorbed by companies and offset by a weakening of the Chinese currency's exchange rate.

Chinese officials have targeted operations of American companies in China by slowing customs clearance for their goods and stepping up regulatory scrutiny that can hamper operations. There were too many other factors at play in the 19th century that could have been more important, from slavery in the U.S. providing farmers with free labour to Britain's burgeoning empire, which became so costly to maintain. "We've actually seen an increased sensitivity to USA companies at the local level", he added. Tariffs are taxes paid by USA companies - such as manufacturers and chemical producers - that bring in products from overseas. Shipments take about three weeks to cross the Pacific Ocean by sea, giving negotiators more time to reach a settlement before importers may have to pay the increased charges.

Liu, speaking to Chinese state TV on his arrival in Washington, said he "came with sincerity".

U.S. stock futures fell and Asian shares pared gains after Washington went ahead with the tariff hike, reflecting worries that a broader, more protracted trade war would inflict greater damage on the global economy.

Liu's interview underlined the need for any agreement not to be seen as undermining Chinese sovereignty - as the United States demand to change domestic laws surely would be.

Also Thursday, Trump said he received "a attractive letter" from Chinese President Xi Jinping and would "probably speak to him by phone".

The two countries are sparring over USA allegations Beijing steals technology and pressures companies to hand over trade secrets in a campaign to turn Chinese companies into world leaders in robotics, electric cars and other advanced industries.

Trump said he is in no rush to conclude trade talks with China.

This week's setback was unexpected. Through late last week, Trump administration officials were suggesting that negotiators were making steady progress. They wouldn't identify the specific issues involved.

According to people familiar with the talks, the mood between China and America's top trade envoys had been downbeat prior to talks ending. "China needs a cooperative agreement with equality and dignity".

"A real enforcement mechanism is critical", the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai said in a statement.



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