China Says Tit-For-Tat Tariffs Will 'Destroy' US-China Trade

China Says Tit-For-Tat Tariffs Will 'Destroy' US-China Trade

Officials will hold hearings in late August on the list of targeted products and an administration official said it would take about two months to finalise, at which point Trump would decide whether to go ahead with the levies.

Washington on Wednesday announced it was starting the process to slap 10-per cent tariffs on another $ 200 billion in Chinese export goods as soon as September.

TRT World's Kevin McAleese reports from Washington DC.

The move would be the latest in the escalating trade skirmish between the world's two biggest economies.

"Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against USA products".

"The Chinese government as always will have no choice but to take the necessary countermeasures", said China's ministry of commerce in a statement, without elaborating further.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a statement that this is "an appropriate response", as China has for years "pursued abusive trading practices with regard to intellectual property and innovation".

The ministry said it "solemnly protests" the latest tariff list published by Washington, calling it "totally unacceptable".

"The behaviour of the USA is hurting China, hurting the world, and hurting itself", the ministry said in a statement, saying it was "shocked" by the United States actions.

The administration said the new levies are a response to China's decision to retaliate against the first round of USA tariffs. Each side is mulling tariffs on a further US$16 billion in goods that would bring the totals to US$50 billion.

S&P 500 and Dow futures dropped around 1 percent, pointing to a weak opening on Wall Street later on Wednesday.

President Donald Trump has said he may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese goods - roughly the total amount of USA imports from China a year ago. "Given China's likelihood of retaliation, it's also billions worth of new tariffs on American exporters". The Republican chairman of the U-S Senate Finance Committee says the move is reckless. The U-S Chamber of Commerce says the proposed measure would ultimately hurt American families.

In Beijing, Li Chenggang, assistant minister at China's Commerce Ministry, said at a forum in Beijing that the latest U.S. proposals interfered with the globalisation of the world economy and that China's support for a multilateral trade system would not change.

At a forum in Beijing, a senior official accused the U.S. of "damaging the world economic order" and said tit-for-tat tariffs would "destroy" trade between the rival powers. "We can not turn a blind eye to China's mercantilist trade practices, but this action falls short of a strategy that will give the administration negotiating leverage with China while maintaining the long-term health and prosperity of the American economy".

The Retail Industry Leaders Association, a lobby group representing the largest United States retailers, said: "The president has broken his promise to bring 'maximum pain on China, minimum pain on consumers'".

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