Trump announces tariffs on $200B in Chinese goods

Getty Images
President Trump on Monday announced that he is directing the U.S. Trade Representative to impose tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese imports, a move expected to escalate the trade war between the world’s two largest economies. 
The tariffs are expected to go into effect on Sept. 24 and will be set at a 10 percent level until the end of the year, after which they will increase to 25 percent. 
The tariffs will hit everything from fish such as salmon and halibut, vegetables, nuts, grains, orange juice and metals including titanium and uranium.

Changes to the proposed list were made after the Trade Representative received comments and held hearings on the issue.

{mosads}The president has vowed to do another round of tariffs on $267 billion on Chinese goods if Beijing retaliates against this round.
If Trump follows through with a third batch of tariffs, they could more than cover China’s imports into the United States. 
The U.S. is using Section 301 of the trade law to levy the tariffs, saying that China has for years escaped punishment for engaging in unfair trade practices that include intellectual property and technology theft. 
“These practices plainly constitute a grave threat to the long-term health and prosperity of the United States economy,” Trump said in a statement. 
Senior officials at the White House say they have urged Chinese officials for at least the past year to fix systemic problems in their economy that hurt U.S. businesses and workers. But so far no changes have happened. 
U.S. and Chinese officials met briefly last month without any solutions to the trade dispute. 
Senior administration officials said Monday in a call with reporters that there was nothing to announce on whether the U.S. and China would hold additional meetings to negotiate on trade. 
China’s foreign ministry on Monday said that Beijing would retaliate again if Trump implements the new tariffs, Reuters reported.
“China has had many opportunities to fully address our concerns. Once again, I urge China’s leaders to take swift action to end their country’s unfair trade practices. Hopefully, this trade situation will be resolved, in the end, by myself and President Xi of China, for whom I have great respect and affection,” Trump said a statement.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin last week proposed another round of talks with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He later this month in an effort to ease tensions in the escalating trade war.
A few goods were removed from the initial list that included some Apple products, bicycle helmets, playpens and some consumer electronics. 
The U.S. and China exchanged 25 percent tariffs of $50 billion on each other’s goods over the summer, escalating tensions between the two nations. 
Trump’s protectionist trade policies have been met with skepticism from leading Republicans and business groups.
“Any time tariffs are imposed I worry that Americans will be forced to pay extra costs — in this case on nearly half of U.S. imports from China,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) said Monday.

“I continue to emphasize that the ultimate means to create an effective outcome is for President Trump and President Xi to engage constructively to develop a long-term and profound solution that levels the playing field for American manufacturers, farmers and workers,” Brady added.

“The U.S. economy runs on pro-growth policies, but that’s not what tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods deliver,” said U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas Donohue in a statement. 

Donohue agreed that the administration has serious issues to resolve with China on issues such as market access, unfair subsidies, technology theft and cybersecurity but said there are less harmful ways to achieve better trade. 

“Today’s decision makes clear that the administration did not heed the numerous warnings from American consumers and businesses about rising costs and lost jobs on Main Street, in factories, and on farms and ranches across the country,” Donohue said. 

—Updated at 7:53 p.m.
Tags Donald Trump Kevin Brady Steven Mnuchin
See all Hill.TV See all Video