China Reacts to Tariff Announcement

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Posted: Mar 02, 2018 9:24 AM
China Reacts to Tariff Announcement

China has expressed its “grave concern” that President Trump plans to impose steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

“The Chinese side expresses grave concern,” the ministry of commerce said, without mentioning anything about retaliation. Previously, however, Chinese officials said they would take “necessary measures” to stand up for their national interests. 

“We should cooperate and try to find ways to overcome this difficulty, rather than benefit oneself at the other’s expense and implement unilateral trade limitation,” said Hua Chunying, a foreign ministry spokesperson. “China urges the US to exercise self-restraint, not to implement trade protection tools, confront multilateral trading rules and make a contribution to global trade regulations.”

The announcement that Trump plans to impose a 25 percent tax on steel imports and a 10 percent tax on aluminum imports likely did not trigger a more critical response from China since the country is not among the top 10 sources for U.S. steel imports, CNBC reports.

“The impact on China is not big,” said Li Xinchuang, vice secretary-general of the China Iron and Steel Association, reports The Guardian. “Nothing can be done about Trump. We are already numb to him.”

The countries that will be most affected include Canada, Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, Russia, Turkey, Japan, Taiwan, Germany, and India.

President Trump defended his plan to impose tariffs, arguing Friday on Twitter: “When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win. Example, when we are down $100 billion with a certain country and they get cute, don’t trade anymore-we win big. It’s easy!”

"We must protect our country and our workers," he added. "Our steel industry is in bad shape. IF YOU DON’T HAVE STEEL, YOU DON’T HAVE A COUNTRY!"