Donald Trump fires first round of tariffs on China

Jul 07, 2018, 10:11 IST | Agencies

Yesterday's tariffs could just be the opening skirmishes in the trade war, as US President Donald Trump has vowed to hit as much as $450 billion in Chinese goods, the vast majority of imports

Donald Trump fires first round of tariffs on China
Donald Trump and Xi Jinping. Pic/AFP

The US imposed punishing tariffs on Chinese imports yesterday, the first shots in what Beijing called "the largest trade war in economic history" between the top economies. At the stroke of midnight Washington time, the US implemented 25-percent duties on about $34 billion in Chinese machinery, electronics and high-tech equipment, including autos, computer hard drives and LEDs. Beijing said retaliatory measures "took effect immediately".

Yesterday's tariffs could just be the opening skirmishes in the trade war, as US President Donald Trump has vowed to hit as much as $450 billion in Chinese goods, the vast majority of imports. Economists have warned that the tit-for-tat measures could throttle global growth and strike at the heart of the world trade system, causing shockwaves across the planet.

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China retaliates
China said yesterday it had already imposed retaliatory measures on US goods, moving immediately after Washington implemented tariffs on Chinese goods at the stroke of midnight. "China's measures against the US took effect immediately," said Lu Kang, spokesman for the foreign ministry. Lu said the commerce ministry had previously released a list that matched Washington's $34 billion dollar for dollar.

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