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Trump Warns China Not to Retaliate Against Tariff Hike

Trump Warns China Not to Retaliate Against Tariff Hike
(Walter Arce/Dreamstime)

Monday, 13 May 2019 06:56 AM

President Donald Trump on Monday warned China not to retaliate against a hike in tariffs he imposed last week and said U.S. consumers would not pay for any increase in duties.

There "is no reason for the U.S. Consumer to pay the Tariffs, which take effect on China today ... China should not retaliate-will only get worse!" Trump tweeted, adding that tariffs can be avoided if manufacturers shift production from China to other countries.

"I say openly to President Xi & all of my many friends in China that China will be hurt very badly if you don't make a deal because companies will be forced to leave China for other countries. Too expensive to buy in China. You had a great deal, almost completed, & you backed out!" Trump continued.

The president's denial that U.S. consumers would be affected by the spike in tariffs ran counter to the words of his own economic adviser. White House National Economic Council director Larry Kudlow said in an interview on Sunday that "both sides" would likely suffer amid increased trade tensions with China.

Trump continued to accuse China of reneging on a trade deal the two countries had been negotiating and threatened the nation with economic pain if the trade war drags on, saying businesses will leave China in droves.

"I say openly to President Xi & all of my many friends in China that China will be hurt very badly if you don't make a deal because companies will be forced to leave China for other countries. Too expensive to buy in China. You had a great deal, almost completed, & you backed out!" Trump said.

Earlier Monday, China said it would never surrender to external pressure, but it stopped short of announcing how Beijing will hit back.

The trade war between the world's top two economies jumped up a gear on Friday, with the United States hiking tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods after Trump said Beijing "broke the deal" by reneging on earlier commitments made during months of negotiations.

Trump also ordered U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to begin imposing tariffs on all remaining imports from China, a move that would affect about an additional $300 billion worth of goods.

Beijing has vowed to respond to the latest U.S. tariffs, but has announced no details yet.

"As for the details, please continue to pay attention. Copying a U.S. expression - wait and see," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told a daily news briefing.

"We have said many times that adding tariffs won't resolve any problem. China will never surrender to external pressure. We have the confidence and the ability to protect our lawful and legitimate rights," Geng added, responding to a question on Trump's threat of putting duties on all Chinese imports.

State media also kept up a steady drum beat of strongly-worded commentary on Monday, reiterating that China's door to talks was always open, but vowing to defend the country's interests and dignity.

"At no time will China forfeit the country's respect, and no one should expect China to swallow bitter fruit that harms its core interests," China's top newspaper, the ruling Communist Party's official People's Daily, said in a commentary.

State television said in a separate commentary that the effect on the Chinese economy from the U.S. tariffs was "totally controllable."

"It's no big deal. China is bound to turn crisis to opportunity and use this to test its abilities, to make the country even stronger."

Ahead of talks last week, China wanted to delete commitments from a draft agreement that Chinese laws would be changed to enact new policies on issues from intellectual property protection to forced technology transfers. That move dealt negotiations to resolve the trade dispute a major setback.

Trump has since defended the tariff hike and said he was in "absolutely no rush" to finalize a deal.

Kudlow said on Sunday that there was a "strong possibility" Trump will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping at a G20 summit in Japan in late June.

© 2019 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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President Donald Trump on Monday warned China not to retaliate against a hike in tariffs he imposed last week and said U.S. consumers would not pay for any increase in duties.There "is no reason for the U.S. Consumer to pay the Tariffs, which take effect on China today ......
trump, china, tweets, warns, no, retaliation
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2019-56-13
Monday, 13 May 2019 06:56 AM
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