Us China Trade War


Trucks transport containers at a port in Qingdao, Shandong province, China April 8, 2018.

"China does not seek a trade surplus", said Xi to an audience of Chinese and foreign businesspeople.

The comments from both countries followed a week of escalating tariff threats sparked by USA frustration with China's trade and intellectual property policies, worrying financial markets over potential damage to global growth.

The latest actions risk putting the countries "on a slippery slope towards a trade war", they said. He promised progress on areas that are USA priorities including opening China's banking industry and boosting imports but didn't address key irritants for Washington such as a requirement for foreign companies to work through joint ventures that require them to give technology to potential local competitors.

"Economic globalisation is an irreversible trend of the time", Xi told the Boao Forum for Asia.

But he gave no details or an exact date for taking the measures.

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Not only does having many others on its side make it easier for China to resist the United States, but also it undercuts the effectiveness of our sanctions.

China stepped up its attacks on the Trump administration on Monday over billions of dollars worth of threatened tariffs, saying Washington is to blame for trade frictions and repeating it was impossible to negotiate under "current circumstances".

For years, most American farmers have praised NAFTA as a big win for United States agriculture because it opened up lowered trade barriers in Mexico, which has become one of the top buyers of USA pork, grain and soy.

Asia markets - hammered along with global equities by the trade row in recent weeks - rallied on the speech Tuesday.

The speech was attended by leaders including Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde.

President Trump acknowledged Monday that American farmers may be hurt by Chinese tariffs.

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Elon Musk, CEO of electric auto giant Tesla asked for Trump's help on the issue this year, alluding to the troubles his firm has faced to producing in China. Business groups welcomed the commitment but said breaking into China's state-dominated financial industries would be hard for new competitors and Beijing might impose restrictions that would make such an effort unprofitable.

The week started with China imposing $3 billion of tariffs on USA fruits, nuts, wine and pork, and rapidly escalated to threats that could seriously curtail hundreds of billions of dollars in trade between the world's two largest economies.

Xi pledged specific measures to address concerns on IP protection. "Now it's $500 billion in deficits and a theft of $300 billion in intellectual property".

That would be costly for China, but President Xi Jinping has already said he's willing to do whatever it takes to win this thing.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin acknowledged there was a risk of a trade war, but said the intention is to defend U.S. interests and the administration remains willing to negotiate. President Trump has threatened to slap tariffs on as much as $150 billion in Chinese products, in an effort to cut the bilateral trade imbalance that the USA says favors China by $375 billion. This would delay the rate hike plan by the US Fed (Federal Reserve) as the decision to raise rates might be reversed or put on hold.

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