02:36 GMT02 March 2021
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    Washington and Beijing have been engaged in a trade spat since 2018, when President Donald Trump announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports, justifying the move by the need to balance the trade deficit.

    US President Donald Trump has taken to Twitter to pledge that he will respond to China's new tariffs as early as this afternoon, describing it as a “great opportunity for the United States.” 

    “Our country has lost, stupidly, trillions of dollars with China over many years. They have stolen our intellectual property at a rate of hundreds of billions of dollars a year, and they want to continue. I won’t let that happen! We don’t need China and, frankly, would be far better off without them,” Trump tweeted.

    The remarks come hours after China imposed a new batch of 10 and 5 percent tariffs on $75 billion worth of US imports starting from September 1 and December 15, respectively.

    "The Tariff Committee of the State Council of the People's Republic of China has decided to introduce additional 10 percent and 5 percent tariffs on $75 billion worth of imported US goods," the committee said.

    The goods include a spate of US agricultural products, such as soybeans, wheat, corn and sorghum, beef, pork and crude oil.

    Additionally on 15 December, China is due to reimpose previously suspended tariffs on imported US cars and components, according to the country’s Finance Ministry.

    "Additional 25 percent and 5 percent tariffs on cars and car components from the United States will be imposed again ... on December 15, 2019," the Finance Ministry said in a statement on Friday.

    The move came after President Trump's earlier statement that he was "the chosen one" to punish China for years of "trade cheating".

    Wall Street Main Indices Decline

    US stock shares of major companies dropped sharply on Friday immediately after President Donald Trump threatened to respond to China for imposing new tariffs on American goods.

    As of 11:35 a.m. EST (3:25 p.m. GMT) the Dow Jones index was down 1.4% (about 378 points), tech index Nasdaq by 1.75 percent (139 points), and the S&P 500 had dropped by 1.5 percent (44 points). The markets, traded at the New York Stock Exchange, close at 4:00 p.m. EST.

    US-China Tariff War Show No Signs of Abating

    The retaliatory tariffs by China followed Trump’s announcement earlier this month of 10 percent tariffs on an additional $300 billion in Chinese goods, although some items have since been removed from the list and others delayed until after the holiday shopping season.

    The Chinese-US trade row began in mid-2018, when Trump announced tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports to help fix a $400 billion trade deficit he claimed was caused by China’s “unfair trade practices.”

    Along with the import duties, the US moved to blacklist the Chinese tech giant Huawei, accusing the company of installing “backdoor” access in its devices to help Chinese intelligence services spy on users worldwide. Beijing vehemently rejects the claims.


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