US consumers may bear brunt of Trump's tariffs

World       by Muhammad Irfan | Published

"China has openly stated that they are actively trying to impact and change our election by attacking our farmers, ranchers and industrial workers due to their loyalty to me", Mr Trump tweeted. The White House warned Monday that it would respond to any retaliation from Beijing with yet more tariffs on roughly $267 billion of Chinese exports.

"If the United States launches any new tariff measures, China will have to take countermeasures to firmly ensure our legitimate rights and interests", foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters during a regular press briefing on Monday.

US tariffs on Chinese goods have steadily expanded to include more types of product over the last few months.

US business officials are continuing to express concerns about the escalating trade war.

"China has had many opportunities to fully address our concerns", Trump said.

"But, so far, China has been unwilling to change its practices", he said.

USA tariffs on $200 billion more in Chinese goods begin September 24 at 10 percent, then would rise to 25 percent on January 1. In retaliation, Beijing has announced plans to hit USA goods, ranging from wheat to textiles, with 5 percent to 10 percent tariffs.

Lobbying against the tariffs has risen sharply in Washington but Trump's policy has left candidates in competitive races for November's hard-fought midterm congressional elections in awkward positions.

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"We appreciate the Trump Administration removing consumer connected devices, the largest tariff code CTA identified in our USTR comments".

Last week, the American Chambers of Commerce in China and in Shanghai reported 52 percent of more than 430 companies that responded to a survey said they have faced slower customs clearance and increased inspections and bureaucratic procedures. It brings all Chinese imports subject to added tariffs to $250bn, roughly half of China's shipments to the United States past year. The US remains open to negotiations but China must show it's seriously willing to make systemic economic changes, the senior administration officials said on Monday.

"China is forced to respond to United States unilateralism and trade protectionism, and has no choice but to respond with its own tariffs", the Finance Ministry said in a statement on its website late on Tuesday. The missive from Cupertino complained that some Apple products were included on a list of $200 billion worth of Chinese imports that could face tariffs imposed by the United States Department of Homeland Security.

The tariffs will place an additional 5-percent in duty on USA products including smaller aircraft, computers and textiles, and an extra 10-percent on goods such as chemicals, meat, wheat and wine.

The U.S. economy appears strong enough to withstand damage from the tariff battle, he said.

The US-China trade talks are scheduled for next week.

The problem with the trade fight is that once the tariffs are in place, there is pressure on both sides not to back down. And in a victory for Apple Inc. and its American customers, the administration removed smart watches and some other consumer electronics products from the list of goods to be targeted by the new tariffs.

"Ten percent isn't much, it's really just a warning shot", University of Maryland economist Peter Morici said during an interview on FOX Business' "Mornings with Maria" of the Trump administration's latest tariffs. The administration is targeting a bewildering variety of goods - from sockeye salmon to baseball gloves to bamboo mats - forcing USA companies to scramble for suppliers outside China, absorb the import taxes or pass along the cost to their customers. Also in Beijing's crosshairs are exports like hybrid electric and off-road vehicles, coal, dump trucks, asphalt, MRI machines and motorcycles, among other items.

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