In another dramatic move, President Trump has threatened Monday to levy tariffs on nearly all of China’s products shipped to the United States unless Beijing agrees to a host of sweeping trade concessions.
President Trump in a statement ordered his chief negotiator, U.S. Trade Representatives Robert E. Lighthizer, to come up with a list of $200 billion in Chinese products that will be hit with tariffs of 10 percent if China refuses his demands to narrow the widening U.S. trade deficit and also change its industrial policies.
Mr. Trump warned that he was prepared to hit China with another $200 billion in import taxes unless Beijing gives in.
Should the U.S. impose the new tariffs, nearly all of the $505 billion in products that the United States imports from China would be hit.
“The trade relationship between the United States and China must be much more equitable,” Trump said. “The United States will no longer be taken advantage of on trade by China and other countries in the world.”
In a statement published shortly after the announcement, China’s Ministry of Commerce called the move “blackmail.”
“If the U.S. loses its senses and publishes a new list, China will be forced to take comprehensive measures that are both strong in quantity and gravity and will fight back,” it read.