China PM warns 'China will take measures in response' to tariffs

Chinese company producing Donald Trump's flags for re-election campaign despite looming trade war

China says it may hike tariffs on United States pork, other goods.

China's commerce ministry, in a statement shortly after the U.S. deadline passed at 04:01 GMT on Friday, said that it was forced to retaliate, meaning imported United States goods including cars, soybeans, and lobsters also faced 25 per cent tariffs.

However, China stopped short of actually saying it had implemented tariffs, stirring market confusion.

Global stock markets managed small gains Friday, overcoming earlier wobbles prompted by China and the United States firing opening salvos in a trade war that pits the world's two biggest economies against each other. "If this ends at $34 billion, it will have a marginal effect on both economies, but if it escalates to $500 billion like Trump said then it's going to have a big impact for both countries". Others think he really wants to address the U.S. trade deficit issue with China.

Al Jazeera's McBride said that the looming trade war has not played well "to the general business sentiment".

Société Générale economists Stephen Gallagher and Yao Wei, quoted in the South China Morning Post regarding the effects on the rest of the world: "One channel of spillovers is via weakened demand from the two largest economies in the world; and the other equally important and likely quicker transmission would be along global value chains".

US officials and business owners have warned Trump that the tariffs will be a major hit to American companies.

In March, Washington and Seoul announced an agreement on a renegotiated free trade accord, giving U.S. carmakers greater access to the South Korean market.

"Our commodity market and job market are relatively flexible, and our foreign-related economic sectors' ability to make flexible adjustment is more prominent, " said Guo Shuqing, chairman of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, in an interview Thursday with the Chinese financial newspaper Financial News.

Chinese shares, battered in the run-up to the tariff deadline, reversed earlier losses to close higher, but the yuan remained weaker against the dollar.

Gao Feng, China's Ministry of Commerce spokesman said Thursday that the USA, in hurting the world, is hurting itself, the Times reported.

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From blue jeans to motorbikes and whiskey, the EU's hit-list of products targeted the most emblematic of American exports.

Ford Motor Co said on Thursday that for now, it will not hike prices of imported Ford and higher-margin luxury Lincoln models in China. If that were to persist, it could potentially disrupt imports of key products such as pork and soybeans. There did not appear to be any direct instructions to hold up cargoes, but some customs departments were waiting for official guidance on imposing added tariffs, the sources said.

Trump has vowed for years to tackle Chinese trade practices, accusing Beijing of stealing US intellectual property and slammed the $375 billion USA trade deficit with the country.

After that, the hostilities could intensify: Trump said Washington is ready to target an additional $200 billion in Chinese imports - and then $300 billion more - if Beijing does not yield. "So we have 50 plus 200 plus nearly 300", Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One on Thursday.

During an official visit to Bulgaria, China's No. 2 leader, Premier Li Keqiang, said "no one will win by fighting a trade war, yet China will take countermeasures in the face of unilateral moves". Sate-run China Daily, called the Trump administration "a gang of hoodlums with its shakedown of other countries, particularly China".

"Its unruliness looks set to have a profoundly damaging impact on the global economic landscape in the coming decades, unless countries stand together to oppose it".

Foreign companies accounted for $20 billion, or 59 percent, of the $34 billion of exports from China that would be subject to new US tariffs, with USA firms accounting for a significant part of that 59 percent, Gao said.

Trump has threatened to raise tariffs on China to roughly the value of total Chinese exports to the United States a year ago of $506bn.

"This is not economic Armageddon".

However, after the elections in November it was possible that the economic costs of Trump's approach would be clearer and prompt a rethink, Leering said.

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