Trump wants $200 billion in China tariffs despite talks, sources say

President Donald Trump holds an Oval Office meeting at the White House on Sept. 11 2018. LEAH MILLIS  Reuters

President Donald Trump holds an Oval Office meeting at the White House on Sept. 11 2018. LEAH MILLIS Reuters

It is also important to note that things are only getting started in the trade conflict, and unless China is willing to make some major concessions, and soon, then the world is likely to witness a protracted conflict lasting years.

The United States only imported $505 billion in goods imported from China previous year.

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The Trump administration has demanded that China cut its $375 billion trade surplus with the United States, end policies aimed at acquiring USA technologies and intellectual property and roll back high-tech industrial subsidies.

US stocks reversed course on Friday to trade lower after Bloomberg reported that President Donald Trump instructed aides to proceed with tariffs on about $200 billion more in Chinese products.

China has threatened retaliation, which could include action against U.S. companies operating there.

As a result, Chinese tech stocks are taking a beat across the board.

The White House is pushing tariffs as a powerful negotiating tool for winning what it says are better trade deals for all Americans.

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The longer the trade war continues the less attractive China will become as a manufacturing base for global companies, making other emerging markets like Indonesia and India preferable locations for manufacturing. It happened just hours after the Chinese Ministry of Commerce said that they had received an invitation for talks from Washington.

The U.S. -China Business Council (USCBC), a nonpartisan non-profit representing around 200 American companies, told Observer that, in recent weeks, the council has been hearing from U.S. companies about delays and challenges getting licensing approvals in China.

Among the category of "Industries most impacted by initial $50bn tariffs", automobile appears at number three in both the lists, with 80.5 of the respondents claiming that the industry was hit with the USA -imposed tariffs, while 75 percent claiming that the industry was hit with the China-imposed tariffs.

Trump has used tariffs to try to pressure Beijing to change its trade practices because the president believes the measures hurt China more than the US.

US President Donald Trump said last week that in addition to preparing tariffs on the further US$200 billion worth of goods, he had tariffs on an additional US$267 billion worth of goods ready "on short notice if I want".

"The administration is faced with the fact that if they go ahead with the US$200 billion, they will hurt the U.S. economy quite badly, and things are not going so well with the midterms", he said. The escalation from imposing new duties on US$50 billion in products to more than four times that number has prompted a surge in lobbying efforts from major United States corporations that will suffer collateral damage.

Envoys from the two countries last met August 22 in Washington but reported no progress.

His comment tempered cautious optimism among investors over the USA government's proposal for another round of talks with Beijing. A meeting among Cabinet-level officials could ease market worries over the escalating tariff war that threatens to engulf all trade between the world's two largest economies and raise costs for companies and consumers.

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