China to impose $34bn tariffs before the U.S. as trade dispute escalates

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ASIAN ANGST The ongoing angst over U.S. President Donald Trump's trade tariffs had extended the recent slide in Asian markets overnight, in particular Chinese shares which are now deep into "bear" market territory.

"The US measures are essentially attacking global supply and value chains", Gao said.

"While each measure on its own has small macroeconomic effects, the combination of the measures, the supply chain disruptions and the increased business uncertainty could spell trouble for the U.S. economy", Daco said.

China's foreign ministry said Tuesday that Beijing won't hesitate to retaliate against US tariffs and escalate a trade war with Washington if tensions over economic negotiations with the Trump administration continue to rise.

"China will not bow down in the face of threats and blackmail and will not falter from its determination to defend free trade and the multilateral system".

U.S. -CHINA TARIFFS: The Trump administration is set to impose a 25 percent tariff on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports starting Friday.

Hopes are dwindling for the world's two biggest economies to reach a breakthrough this week before Washington starts charging tariffs on $34 billion in Chinese imports. The Trump administration stated that the tariffs are created to hit industries identified by the Chinese government's Made in China 2025 initiative, which aims to build up certain high growth sectors. According to Bloomberg, President Trump will cut as much as half a percentage point from staggering growth levels of around 6.9 percent.

The tariffs hit a broad spectrum of Chinese goods - like passenger vehicles, radio transmitters, aircraft parts and computer hard drives - from industries the Trump administration says have benefited from unfair trade practices.

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Still, there were plenty of anti-Trump merchandise, including items calling for his impeachment, available from other sellers. Fournier's message soon went viral, leading to angry consumers threatening to boycott the company.

China responded by threatening tariffs on $50 billion worth of U.S. exports to China, mostly aimed at agricultural goods.

"China wants the European Union to stand with Beijing against Washington, to take sides", said one European diplomat. "So certainly the fact that we're now talking about automotive tariffs against the Europeans - where there is a problem, where the European tariffs against USA cars are four times what the American tariffs are against European cars - that's something that potentially really disrupts supply chain and will hurt American corporations and eventually the American economy".

His company, which sells sauvignon blancs and zinfandels to distributors in China has lost a half-million dollars in orders since China slapped tariffs in April on $3 billion worth of US fruits, nuts and wine. Given the 12-hour time difference, that would have put its implementation ahead of Washington's.

"I strongly urge the Chinese government to fully estimate the negative impact of the trade war on the Chinese economy and adopt practical and pragmatic measures to avoid or mitigate a trade war", Yu Zhi, a professor at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, said in an interview.

Still, a trade war would likely distract from China's efforts to expand its diplomatic, economic and military footprints overseas, notably through Xi's signature "Belt and Road" involving $1 trillion in investments in infrastructure projects across Asia and beyond.

Both Chinese and USA business sources in China said there appeared to be little hope that the tariffs could be averted.

An American company that ships cherries to a coastal province in southeast China recently encountered a new hurdle at the border: Customs officers ordered a load into quarantine for a week, so it spoiled and was sent back to the United States.

There had been hopes that the U.S. and China might step away from the measures but neither side has backed down.

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