Economy

China proposes retaliatory tariffs on $60B of US products

China proposes retaliatory tariffs on $60B of US products

"The implementation date of the taxation measures will be subject to the actions of the U.S., and China reserves the right to continue to introduce other countermeasures", China's Ministry of Commerce said in a statement.

The retaliation stands to further inflame tensions between the world's two biggest economies and echoes China's response to the previous round of tariffs, which took effect last month.

The move comes after Trump asked United States trade officials to consider imposing a 25% tariff on $200bn of Chinese goods, up from the 10% level originally proposed last month, as the two countries attempt to reach an agreement on trade.

China is threatening to impose the tariffs on a wide range of products, including chemicals, plastics and leather goods, according to business groups representing those industries.

The Commerce Ministry issued a statement saying the new duties would be applied if Washington pulled the trigger on President Donald Trump's threat to raise tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods.

"Instead of retaliating, China should address the long-standing concerns about its unfair trading practices", White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said in an emailed statement.

The Republican president has been keen to show he is tough on trade ahead of tricky congressional elections in November, joking at a rally in Pennsylvania on Thursday: "China is not happy with me".

The last time China was hit hard by growth fears, the shock waves rattled financial markets around the world, including in the U.S. In August 2015, the People's Bank of China stunned investors by lowering its target level for the yuan against the dollar, triggering a global selloff in stocks.

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Meanwhile, Beijing's Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, met with his USA counterpart, Mike Pompeo at the ASEAN Foreign Minister's Meeting in Singapore on Friday.

China called for an end to the trade dispute through talks with the United States, but on May 29, the United States announced another round of tariffs on about $50 billion in Chinese goods.

These taxes come as similar levies on agricultural goods have been imposed by the European Union, Canada and Mexico in retaliation to Mr Trump's tariffs on steel and aluminium.

The US tariffs now in place or threatened add up to nearly half of the value of goods it imported from China past year.

The dynamic has proved hard to change, given USA consumers' reliance on Chinese goods.

Signalling the nation's readiness to respond to higher tariffs threatened by Donald Trump on $200bn of Chinese imports, officials in Beijing said countermeasures were ready and waiting for the next move from Washington.

The declaration comes amid a growing U.S. -Sino trade spat.

Beijing can not match those measures dollar for dollar, as its exports far exceed imports.