China firmly opposes United States tariffs on Chinese imports

US President Donald Trump signs trade sanctions against China to retaliate against the alleged theft of American intellectual property

"There is genuine systemic risk", said Joseph Francois, the managing director of the World Trade Institute at the University of Bern, Switzerland. "They won't clip the wings of China Inc", he said.

Trump justified the move as a response to the theft of U.S. companies' intellectual property by the Chinese government.

"We have a tremendous intellectual property theft situation going on", Trump told reporters.

Senator Sherrod Brown welcomed the news that the Trump administration is taking steps to launch crackdown on China's violation of intellectual property laws.

As per USTR, the American US consultation request identifies apparent breaches by China of WTO rules, harming the intellectual property rights of US companies and innovators. In other cases, technology transfers are a precondition of doing business in China.

From 2010-17, General Motors sold more cars and trucks per year in China than it did in the United States.

On the economic front, the United States new orders for manufactured durable goods in February increased $7.4 billion, or 3.1 per cent, to $247.7 billion, the Commerce Department said on Friday.

"I don't think unilateral tariffs imposed by the USA, not even in collaboration with its closest allies in Western Europe, are going to force China to make these drastic changes to its industrial structures". The labor market has been surprisingly slow to adjust, leading affected workers to earn far less money over a lifetime.

China is strongly disappointed and firmly opposes the unilateral trade protectionist action introduced by the Trump administration against Chinese imports, said the Chinese Embassy in the United States on Thursday. Whether there are American corporate or job casualties along the way remains to be seen.

Trump's technology order is in response to "unfair and harmful acquisition of U.S. technology", said a statement by the U.S. Trade Representative's office. The administration said the suspensions can be renewed or revoked then, "pending discussions of satisfactory long-term alternative means to address the threatened impairment to US national security".

Ultimately, for the WTO, the key question is how other countries respond to the US, according to Francois. "As America's third largest and most rapidly growing export market and as the largest foreign owner of Treasuries, China has considerably more leverage over the US than Washington politicians care to admit". When the goods are shipped back to the USA, they are considered imports in the trade balance.

The U.S. personal savings rate has fallen steadily since the late 1970s.

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"It is the largest deficit in the history of the world, it's out of control", he said.

So, what's the point of tariffs on steel if they don't apply to the biggest foreign suppliers?

The end result of sanctions is damage to the American middle-class' pocket book, the balance sheet of American firms, and its people's confidence in the USA long-term economic prospects, he added.

The Federal Reserve's decision to hike interest rates this week also reminded investors that borrowing costs, after almost a decade at record-low levels, are headed higher. Tariffs will not change this reality. And a rise in inflationary pressures could prompt the USA central bank to speed up its pace of interest rate hikes, which could further slow economic growth.

His closest economic advisers and surrogates keep telling the public not to fear a trade war.

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are backing President Trump's decision to impose tariffs on China as Beijing threatens to retaliate.

China's Commerce Ministry said Beijing was considering a tariff increase of 25 per cent on pork and aluminum scrap, mirroring Trump's 25 per cent charge on steel.

After announcing a string of tough trade measures against China, US President Donald Trump has said that Beijing would no longer have a "free reign" like it had been having for many years, which resulted in a massive American trade deficit with it.

Particularly vulnerable to Chinese retaliation are the pork and soybean industries, which are concentrated in the Trump-friendly Midwest.

"It's not clear what the Trump administration's bottom line is", said Scott Kennedy, the head of China studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.

However, Rosentreich adds, markets could be "overreacting" to Trump's threats to start a trade war. Failing to uphold these institutions could have major consequences in the future.

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