In the latest escalation of the U.S.-China trade war, President Donald Trump announced on Twitter Aug. 23 that he will balance the “very unfair trading relationship” with the Chinese regime by raising tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods from 25 percent to 30 percent.
The new rate will go into effect on Oct. 1.
“For many years China (and many other countries) has been taking advantage of the United States on Trade, Intellectual Property Theft, and much more. Our country has been losing hundreds of billions of dollars a year to China, with no end in sight,” Trump said in an Aug. 23 tweet.
“As President, I can no longer allow this to happen!” he added.
Trump’s decision came after China imposed an additional 10 percent of tariffs on roughly $75 billion worth of U.S. goods earlier in the day, a tit-for-tat retaliation for the U.S. administration’s decision to impose tariffs on a previously untaxed $300 billion worth of Chinese goods that will go into effect on Sept. 1.
He also announced that those tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese goods will now go up to 15 percent from the previously announced 10 percent.
Of note, earlier this month, the president had said that some categories of goods in the $300 billion, including China-manufactured consumer electronics, would have tariffs delayed until December 15. Trump had said this was to alleviate added costs for U.S. consumers during the holiday shopping season.
In a series of tweets on Friday evening, Trump protested about China’s new tariff rates, calling it “politically motivated.”
“Sadly, past Administrations have allowed China to get so far ahead of Fair and Balanced Trade that it has become a great burden to the American Taxpayer,” Trump said.
Earlier today, Trump had vented his frustration via Twitter about the Chinese regime’s unfair trade practices, including intellectual property theft, saying that the United States would be “far better off without them [trade with China].”
“Our Country has lost, stupidly, Trillions of Dollars with China over many years. They have stolen our Intellectual Property at a rate of Hundreds of Billions of Dollars a year, & they want to continue…The vast amounts of money made and stolen by China from the United States, year after year, for decades, will and must stop,” Trump said. He urged U.S. companies to look for manufacturing alternatives to China.
Wall Street took a dive after Trump’s announcement. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 623.34 points, or 2.37 percent, to 25,628.9, while the S&P 500 lost 75.84 points, or 2.59 percent, to 2,847.11. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 239.62 points, or 3 percent, to 7,751.77.
U.S. crude oil prices fell by 2.67 percent to $53.87 per barrel. The dollar index also fell by 0.47 percent.
Trade talks between the two leading economic superpowers have stalled over how the United States could ensure that China would abide by its commitments, while China has demanded that all tariffs be lifted during negotiations.
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