Published: Thu, May 31, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

White House announces tariffs, trade restrictions to be placed on China

White House announces tariffs, trade restrictions to be placed on China

Last week, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the Trump administration would stand down on imposing tariffs while the two sides continued negotiations to avoid a trade war.

A delegation led by U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is due to arrive Saturday in China.

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) said earlier this month that if imposed, the tariffs would cause "collateral damage" to US manufacturers because many vendors either produce their own products in China or source finished goods and components from contractual partners in China.

Besides, the White House said it would continue with efforts to protect domestic technology and intellectual property, stop non-economic transfers of industrially significant technology and intellectual property to China, and enhance access to the Chinese market. But he said American companies want equal treatment, "and this seems to be one of the ways to do that".

United States companies "would only be in favor of them to the extent that we can level the playing field", Zarit told a news conference.

The new tariff is part of one of three major steps that the U.S. is taking based on the 22 March memorandum signed by President Donald Trump.

Beyond the student limits, U.S. consulates and embassies reportedly received instructions that any Chinese citizen applying for a visa will need to secure additional special permission form the U.S. if they work in research or management for any company the U.S. Commerce Department lists as an entity "requiring higher scrutiny". The official Xinhua news agency reported that Ross will visit China from June 2 to June 4.

Trump has bemoaned the massive US trade deficit with China - $337 billion previous year - as evidence that Beijing has been complicit in abusive trading practices.

It said technology transfers between USA companies and their Chinese partners were the result of normal business practices, not coercive policies.

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According to China, it was a surprise movement that totally opposes the two countries' agreement.

The Wall Street Journal said that the tariff announcement has thrown plans for high-level negotiations into disarray.

A 25% tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods.

Other analysts, however, say the newly confrontational stance may be meant to appease congressional critics of a deal the Trump administration made Friday that allowed Chinese telecom giant ZTE Corp.to stay in business.

Assessing these fines may be a calculated move by the Trump team or just an excellent head fake. The fine would be on top of a $1 billion penalty ZTE has already paid for selling high-tech equipment to North Korea and Iran in violation of USA sanctions.

Trump has faced a backlash among lawmakers this month after announcing he would soften United States sanctions on the Chinese telecoms equipment maker ZTE, which neared collapse due to an April ban on purchasing crucial USA components.

Trump came to power on a campaign platform that committed to putting "America first" on trade and jobs, rhetoric he is now turning into action through protectionist measures, of which he said there will be "many".

Chinese leaders have promised piecemeal changes including allowing full foreign ownership in their auto industry by 2022.

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