China has threatened to make retaliatory measures after President Donald Trump pledged to place additional tariffs on Chinese imports, saying Beijing has not bought a large volume of farm product from the United States and stopped poisoning the U.S. with fentanyl as promised.
In a statement issued Friday, Aug. 2, China’s Commerce Ministry said it “will have to take necessary countermeasures to resolutely defend its core interests” if the U.S. tariff measure takes effect.
The statement comes after President Trump announced Thursday he plans to impose an additional 10% tariff on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese imports, which takes effect Sept. 1.
In a series of tweets, President Trump clarified, “We thought we had a deal with China three months ago, but sadly, China decided to renegotiate the deal prior to signing. More recently, China agreed to buy agricultural product from the U.S. in large quantities, but did not do so.”
“Additionally, my friend President Xi said that he would stop the sale of Fentanyl to the United States—this never happened, and many Americans continue to die!”
“We look forward to continuing our positive dialogue with China on a comprehensive Trade Deal, and feel that the future between our two countries will be a very bright one!”
…We look forward to continuing our positive dialogue with China on a comprehensive Trade Deal, and feel that the future between our two countries will be a very bright one!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 1, 2019
In response, China said President Trump’s announcement is a violation of his agreement with Chinese leader Xi Jinping in June to revive trade talks, The Associated Press reported.
“All the consequences will be borne by the United States,” the commerce ministry said.
The question is that what measures China will take to hit back at the United States after Beijing “runs of arsenal” following the previous retaliations.
Since the trade war escalated in July 2018, the Trump administration has imposed tariffs twice on Chinese products, one worth $50 billion and another worth $200 billion. China also retaliated twice, with the first one worth $50 billion, but the second one worth only $60 billion, because it lacks U.S. imports to tax.
According to the U.S. Trade Representative office, the United States has a very large trade deficit with China. In 2018, goods exports from United States to China totaled $120.3 billion, and imports totaled $539.5 billion, generating trade deficit of $419.2 billion.
As new trade tensions flare, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo slammed at China’s bad behavior, saying it is hampering free trade and prompting tariffs from Washington, according to Reuters.
During a speech on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) ministerial meetings on Friday in Thailand, Pompeo said the United States “wants free and fair trade, not trade that undermines competition.”
“For decades, China has taken advantage of trade. … It’s time for that to stop. President Trump said we’re gonna fix this. And to fix it requires determination, and that’s what you saw this morning,” Pompeo said at Siam Society, a regional youth leadership program in Bangkok.
Pompeo said that “trade and freedom” are the keys to development and urged countries in the region to shun China until it reforms bad practices.
Pompeo pointed to the current unrest in Hong Kong, saying it is indicative of problems caused by authoritarian rule. He also noted that China’s economy had entered a “new normal of slower growth.”