USA tech firms ask for protection from next Trump tariffs

Tuesday, 11 Sep, 2018

Trump said Friday that tariffs on China worth $200 billion would "will take place very soon depending on what happens". Such a step would significantly escalate his trade war with Beijing and would likely increase costs for a broad range of USA businesses and consumers. Exports from the world's second biggest economy increased by 9.8 per cent while its imports rose by 20 per cent compared to the same month a year ago, according to customs data.

Then he added: "I hate to say this, but behind that there is another $267bn ready to go on short notice if I want". Apple said the tariffs would raise the cost of its US operations and put it at a disadvantage to foreign rivals.

US President Donald Trump tweeted on Saturday that there is a simple solution: Just make the products in the US where there'd be zero tariffs. China will wait until internal pressure builds on Mr Trump, analysts say.

The office of the US trade representative Thursday finished accepting comments on the next round of tariffs, which could hit up to $200 billion in Chinese products any day.

But the tariffs do not appear to have dented the appetite for Chinese-made products in the United States.

That would cover virtually all the goods imported from the world's second largest economy. "That changes the equation".

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Trump's now threatened tariffs on a total of 517 billion dollars in Chinese imports - a figure that eclipses the total amount of goods imported from China to the USA a year ago. These tariffs are the administration's response to its charges that Beijing uses predatory tactics to try to supplant USA technological supremacy.

On Thursday, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told Bloomberg that Trump is willing to meet with Chinese leader Xi Jinping if China shows a willingness to compromise.

Imports of goods and services increased 0.9 percent to a record $261.2 billion in July. By 2021, based on International Monetary Fund economic forecasts, the US would lose about 1 percent of its annual output or about $230 billion while China would lose 0.6 percent of its $18 trillion economy that year or $110 billion.

The National Association of Retailers immediately announced its opposition to the possibility of new tariffs. "U.S. businesses and citizens-not Chinese companies or the government-pay these tariffs on US imports". "The Chinese, you know, may find themselves more isolated if they don't come into the global process", Kudlow said in an interview with CNBC.

Given the smaller amount of goods China imports from the United States on which it could slap duties, Beijing has vowed to hit back with unspecified "qualitative" and "quantitative" measures, actions perceived within the USA business community as likely to be increased customs and regulatory scrutiny.