Trump Administration Threatens Even Higher Tariffs On China

Shipping containers are seen on a cargo vessel at the Dachan Bay Terminals in Shenzhen Guangdong province China

Shipping containers are seen on a cargo vessel at the Dachan Bay Terminals in Shenzhen Guangdong province China

The Trump administration claims this retaliatory tariff is in response to China's decision to impose tariffs on USA goods.

The new duties could be implemented as early as next month.

China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it will fight back should the USA further increase tariffs.

Chinese equities and the yuan extended losses Wednesday afternoon, gaining downward momentum as concern over possible higher US tariffs overwhelmed optimism about Beijing's pledge to support economic growth.

The United States has imposed tariffs on other nations too, including Canada and Mexico, Washington's partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement. "The proposed modification is to maintain the original $34 billion action and the proposed $16 billion action, and to take further action in the form of an additional 10 per cent ad valorem duty on products of China with an annual trade value of approximately $200 billion". Strong reporting of companies, including Apple indicators supports the demand in world markets. Advisers reportedly told President Trump that China's authorities would be more likely to yield if higher tax rates were imposed.

China also left the door open for a resumption of negotiations.

Iron ore prices have also been dropping, with benchmark 62 percent fines, as assessed by Argus Media, ending at $66.50 a tonne on Wednesday, down nearly 17 percent from their peak this year of $79.90 in late February.

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Fundamental reasons can be found for both the weakness in iron ore, which is well supplied, and the strength in steel, which is still seeing strong demand and pollution-related output restrictions.

In a sign the trade standoff is reverberating through Chinese politics, the Politburo signaled on Tuesday that policy makers will focus more on supporting economic growth amid risks from a campaign to reduce debt and the dispute with Trump.

There are commodities that have been affected by the trade dispute, but not to the extent of influencing global pricing, at least so far.

"We would advise the United States side to return to reason, and not blindly let emotions affect their decisions, because in the end this will harm themselves", Mr Geng said. But it can delay licenses and hold up mergers and acquisition approvals for American businesses and increase inspections of USA products at ports.

The bill has started to mount, with the USA government dipping into its coffers to find $12 billion to aid farmers who have been hit by Chinese retaliation.

Concerns about the trade war are popping up in various business and consumer confidence surveys, prices for goods hit by various tariffs are on the rise, and businesses are starting to feel the squeeze from the increased prices.

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