Trade War: China Retaliates with 25% Tariff on Over 100 Products

China has announced plans to hit the United States with new tariffs of 25 per cent on soybeans, airplanes, cars, whiskey, and other imports worth $50 billion, hours after Washington unveiled its own target list.

China's commerce ministry listed 106 products that will be targeted and said a date for the implementation of the tariffs would be announced separately.

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The new tariffs mark a significant escalation of the brewing trade war between the world's two largest economies - with the $100 billion worth of goods cumulatively targeted representing about 17 per cent of the $580 billion in the two-way trade last year.

A third of US soybean exports go to China, totalling $14 billion last year, and the product comes from rural states that voted for President Donald Trump in the 2016 election.

As the Trump administration has ramped up trade actions against China, policymakers in Beijing have emphasised they do not want a trade war but will not back down in the face of US pressure.

"Any attempt to bring China to its knees through threats and intimidation will never succeed. It will not succeed this time either," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said on Wednesday.

"There is no winner in a trade war, and an initiator will harm itself as well as others," he said, noting China had referred the latest US action to the World Trade Organisation.

In recent weeks, both sides have said they are continuing to negotiate - something which could avert the eventual implementation of the tariffs.

 

Published: SBS News