Friday, 16 November, 2018

Amid growing tension, Trump confident China will yield

Trade dispute between Trump China grows as markets tumble US-China trade war fears escalate as threats ramp up
Ray Hunter | 10 April, 2018, 20:32

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.

Trump insists "China will take down its Trade Barriers because it is the right thing to do".

The comments appear to have been an effort to reassure his supporters-and investors-that there was no need to be alarmed about the rapidly rising tensions with China, which escalated further on Thursday when the president ordered the USA trade authorities to identify up to $100 billion worth of Chinese goods that could be subject to additional tariffs.

Asian markets rose on Monday after Trump tweeted that he saw an end to the escalating dispute before the higher tariffs threatened on hundreds of billions of goods would come into effect.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer called China's move "unjustified" and said Trump's proposal was an "appropriate response to China's recent threat of new tariffs".

But Trump did not explain why, amid a week of economic saber-rattling between the two countries that shook global markets, he felt confident a deal could be made. The US sold about $130 billion in goods to China in 2017 and faces a potentially devastating hit to its market there if China responds in kind. He argued that the situation could be a "win-win" for China and the United States if Beijing opens up its economy.

The Trump administration also is pushing for a crackdown on what it says is China's theft of US intellectual property.

In a tweet on Monday morning Trump says that when a Chinese-made vehicle is sent to the US, the tariff is only 2.5 percent, while American cars exported to China are slapped with a 25 percent tariff.

Trump increased levies on Chinese imports last week over allegations China has been ripping off USA technology for its own gains.

Fire breaks out at Trump Tower
Trump's business is based at Trump Tower and his residence is there, but he has spent little time in NY since taking office. In a tweet, President Donald Trump thanked the fire department and claimed that the fire had already been put out.

"This is a problem caused by China, not a problem caused by President Trump", Kudlow said on "Fox News Sunday".

But Trump trade adviser Peter Navarro sent a tougher message later Sunday, claiming the West Wing is "proceeding in a measured way" as negotiations with China continue.

Trump told advisers last week that he was unhappy with China's decision to tax $50 billion in American products, including soybeans and small aircraft, in response to a U.S. move to impose tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods.

Another adviser, Peter Navarro, told NBC's "Meet the Press" that while "there are discussions" with the Chinese, the USA is moving forward on tariffs and investment restrictions against Beijing.

The new ports, plans for which were proposed by Xi in October, would enjoy much greater freedom in terms of policymaking than existing free-trade zones and be more open in terms of market access, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

"We want fair and reciprocal trade".

Further escalation could be in the offing.

Yet Xi must also overcome a credibility gap after years of Chinese promises to free up the economy were followed by more centralised control and state support for local companies. The US Treasury Department is working on plans to restrict Chinese technology investments in the US And there is talk that the US could also put limits on visas for Chinese who want to visit or study in this country.

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