US-China trade war
LATEST UPDATE: November 9, 2018 - 6:28pm
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November 9, 2018

The United States and China resume top-level talks after months of spiraling tension, looking to see if they can find a way forward on disputes from trade to military friction.

Friday's delayed meeting in Washington comes weeks before US leader Donald Trump is expected to meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Argentina, with both sides hoping they can announce some progress. — AFP

November 3, 2018

President Donald Trump has expressed confidence he can reach a deal to end a burgeoning trade war with China, saying he will meet his Chinese counterpart at the Group of 20 meetings in Argentina in about a month.

"I think we'll make a deal with China, and I think it will be a very fair deal for everybody," Trump says. — AP

November 2, 2018

Hong Kong stocks soar almost four percent as investors cheer a report that Donald Trump has asked officials to draw up a draft bill as he eyes a potential trade deal with China following talks with President Xi Jinping.

The Hang Seng Index jumps 3.94 percent, or 1,001.55 points, to 26,417.55 in afternoon trade. — AFP

October 12, 2018

China says it is in communication with the United States amid reports of a planned meeting between President Xi Jinping and President Donald Trump next month following a dive in the U.S. stock market blamed partly on a growing trade war between the world's two largest economies.

Foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang offered no specifics Friday, saying only that China had noted the reports and maintains "communication on dialogues and exchanges at all levels" with the U.S.

The reported meeting would take place during the G-20 summit in Argentina in late November.

The Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post both cited White House sources as saying Trump has decided to proceed with the meeting with Xi. — AP

October 11, 2018

The heads of the World Bank and IMF urge the U.S. and China to play by world trade rules and de-escalate a dispute over Beijing's technology development strategy that threatens to do lasting damage to the global economy. — AP

September 18, 2018

China says it would "take countermeasures" after US President Donald Trump announced new tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese imports taking effect next week. 

"In order to safeguard its legitimate rights and interests and the global free trade order, China has no choice but to take countermeasures in lockstep," the commerce ministry says in the statement, which did not mention a previous threat to add tariffs on $60 billion in US imports if Washington imposed this new wave of levies. — AFP

September 12, 2018

China's vice premier warns that protectionism from "individual countries" poses a "serious hazard" to global growth, in an apparent reference to the US which has imposed tariffs on Chinese goods worth $50 billion with more threatened.

"Some individual countries' protectionist and unilateral measures are gravely undermining the rules-based multilateral trading regime, posing a most serious hazard to the world economy," Hu Chunhua says at a regional World Economic Forum in Hanoi. — Agence France-Presse

September 5, 2018

China is trying to defuse a spiraling tariff war with Washington over technology policy by highlighting gains in other trade-related areas.

The official, Shen Changyu, points to improvements in fighting violations, previously a target of complaints by the United States, Europe and other traders. — AP

August 30, 2018

China's government says it will make economic changes at its own pace regardless of U.S. pressure and that their spiraling dispute over technology can only be settled through talks as equals.

A Commerce Ministry spokesman gave no indication of possible plans for more negotiations after talks last week in Washington ended without progress. — AP

August 24, 2018

Chinese and US negotiators held "constructive and frank" trade talks in Washington this week and the two sides will keep in contact "regarding future plans", the Chinese commerce ministry says.

Delegations led by Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen and US Treasury under secretary David Malpass held talks without announcing any breakthroughs while both sides launched a new batch of tit-for-tat tariffs. — AFP

August 23, 2018

The United States and China impose more tariff hikes on billions of dollars of each other's automobiles, factory machinery and other goods in an escalation of a battle over Beijing's technology policy that companies worry will chill global economic growth.

The 25 percent increases take effect as envoys from both sides held their first high-level talks in two months in Washington. — AP

August 10, 2018

China's auto sales shrink by 5.3 percent in July from a year earlier as SUV demand sagged, adding to signs of economic malaise amid a tariff battle with Washington.

The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, says that drivers in the biggest auto market bought 1.6 million sedans, SUVs and minivans. Total sales, including trucks and buses, fall 4 percent to 1.9 million.

Demand has cooled amid forecasts of slowing economic growth after Beijing tightened lending controls to cool surging debt. — AP

July 21, 2018

Chinese President Xi Jinping arrives in Africa on a four-nation visit seeking deeper military and economic ties while his rival in a bitter trade war, the Trump administration, shows little interest in the world's second most populous continent.

China is already Africa's largest trading partner, and it opened its first military base on the continent last year in the Horn of Africa nation of Djibouti, which this month launched a China-backed free trade zone it calls the largest in Africa. — AP

July 13, 2018

China's June trade grows by double digits amid mounting tension with Washington but Beijing warns its exporters face "rising instabilities and uncertainties." — AP

July 11, 2018

The Chinese government has vowed to take "firm and forceful measures" against U.S. threats to expand tariff hikes.

The comment by a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman followed the U.S. Trade Representative's announcement it was preparing to impose 10 percent tariffs on a wider range of goods from fish sticks to French doors in the escalating trade dispute.

Asked what Beijing would do, foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying gave no details but says, "We will take firm and forceful measures." — AP

July 11, 2018

China criticizes new US tariff threat as 'totally unacceptable,' says it will take 'necessary countermeasures' — AP

July 11, 2018

The Trump administration is readying tariffs on another $200 billion in Chinese imports, ranging from burglar alarms to mackerel, escalating a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative proposed 10 percent tariffs Tuesday on a list of 6,031 Chinese product lines.

The office will accept public comments and hold hearings on the plan Aug. 20-23 before reaching a decision after Aug. 31, according to a senior administration official who briefed reporters on condition of anonymity. — AP

July 5, 2018

 A Chinese government spokesman has said Beijing "will not bow in the face of threats and blackmail" on the eve of U.S. tariff hikes and will defend its interests.

The Commerce Ministry spokesman, Gao Feng, says that Beijing will wait to see what Washington does before taking action of its own.

The Trump administration is poised to raise tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports in the dispute over technology policy. China has threatened to retaliate. — AP

July 5, 2018

Fears that China is threatening U.S. leadership in robots, electric cars and other advanced technologies are pushing the world's two biggest economies toward a full-blown trade war as the two sides prepare to impose tariffs on billions of dollars' worth of each other's products.

In fact, China remains heavily reliant on technologies from the West.

Tech giant ZTE Corp.'s near-death experience after Washington barred it from buying U.S. components was a stark reminder that China's industry leaders cannot function without American technology. — AP

June 29, 2018

China's No. 2 leader, Premier Li Keqiang, has appealed to Korean business leaders to help "protect free trade" in Beijing's latest effort to recruit allies for its escalating dispute with Washington.

Li tells visiting CEOsthat Beijing was willing to "further open up" and promote economic globalization.

They were the latest targets of a Chinese charm offensive that also has been aimed at securing European support against U.S. President Donald Trump's threats of tariff hikes in the dispute over trade and technology.

Chinese relations with Seoul are strained after Beijing destroyed retailer Lotte's business in China last year in retaliation for its sale of land to install an anti-missile system. — AP

June 29, 2018

China has eased limits on foreign ownership in auto manufacturing, insurance and other fields but didn't directly address complaints that are fueling conflict with Washington over trade and technology.

The investment changes had been sought by Washington, Germany and other trading partners. They complain Beijing blocks access to much of its state-dominated economy while Chinese companies operate freely in other countries.

China's announcement followed President Donald Trump's threat to restrict Chinese investment in the United States. — AP

June 27, 2018

President Donald Trump is suggesting his administration may back away from previously announced plans to impose limits on Chinese investment in American technology companies and high-tech exports to China, instead choosing to call upon Congress to act. — AP

June 21, 2018

China accuses the United States of using bullying tactics and blackmail in threatening to impose tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese imports, ramping up criticism that the measures levied in the name of balancing trade would harm both countries' companies and the world economy.

Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng says the U.S. was damaging the global trading order and that its methods would harm its own business interests as well as those of trading partners. — AP

June 20, 2018

One in five foreign companies in China feels compelled to hand over technology for market access, a business group says, highlighting a key irritant in an escalating U.S.-Chinese trade dispute.

The European Union Chamber of Commerce in China's report follows President Donald Trump's order for tariffs on additional Chinese goods in response to complaints Beijing steals or pressures companies to hand over technology.

Out of 532 European companies that responded to a survey, 19 percent "felt compelled to transfer technology in exchange for market access" despite Chinese assurances that it isn't required, the chamber says. — AP

June 19, 2018

Global stock markets fell Tuesday after President Donald Trump threatened to put tariffs on another $200 billion in imports from China, and the Chinese government said it would retaliate, The Associated Press.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 370 points, or 1.5 percent. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong lost 2.8 percent. Major stock indexes in Asia and Europe also took sharp losses. Trump's new proposal calls for a 10 percent tariff on $200 billion in goods, and Beijing said it would respond with "comprehensive measures." It doesn't import enough goods from the U.S. to match the scale of Trump's proposal but could adopt other methods.

June 19, 2018

 President Donald Trump directs the U.S. Trade Representative to prepare new tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese imports as the two nations moved closer to a potential trade war.

The tariffs, which Trump wants set at a 10 percent rate, would be the latest round of punitive measures in an escalating dispute over the large trade imbalance between the two countries. Trump recently ordered tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods in retaliation for intellectual property theft. The tariffs were quickly matched by China on U.S. exports, a move that drew the president's ire. — AP

June 19, 2018

China's government denounces President Donald Trump's threat of new tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods as blackmail and warned it would respond with "strong countermeasures."

The Commerce Ministry warns Beijing is ready to "defend the interests of the Chinese people and enterprises." — AP

June 16, 2018

US farmers find themselves in the crosshairs of a trade war with China and others launched by President Donald Trump, who was elected with the support of many in rural America.

"For American farmers, this isn't theoretical anymore, it's downright scary," the Farmers for Free Trade lobbying group says of the prospects for escalating tariffs. 

"It's no longer a negotiating tactic, it's a tax on their livelihoods."

China is the largest buyer of soy beans, buying $12 billion in 2017, about 30 percent of the US harvest. — AFP

June 16, 2018

China has fired back in a spiraling trade dispute with President Donald Trump by raising import duties on a $34 billion list of American goods including soybeans, electric cars and whiskey.

The government says it was responding in "equal scale" to Trump's tariff hike on Chinese goods in a conflict over Beijing's trade surplus and technology policy that companies worry could quickly escalate and chill global economic growth.

The Commerce Ministry says "the Chinese side doesn't want to fight a trade war, but facing the shortsightedness of the U.S. side, China has to fight back strongly."

The ministry says it's also scrapping deals to narrow Beijing's multibillion-dollar trade surplus with the U.S. by purchasing more American farm goods, natural gas and other products.

The Ministry of Finance says Beijing will impose an additional 25 percent tariff starting July 6 on 545 products from the U.S. including soybeans, electric cars, orange juice, whiskey, salmon and cigars. — AP

June 16, 2018

China plans to impose 25 percent tariffs on roughly $50 billion of U.S. goods in retaliation for the Trump administration's announcement Friday that it would impose duties of the same amount on $50 billion of Chinese goods, according to a report from the official news agency Xinhua.

The tariffs will come in two steps, beginning with duties on 545 U.S. products worth $34 billion that will be focused on farm goods, cars and seafood, Xinhua said.

A second round of tariffs, to be imposed on an unspecified date, on 114 items worth $16 billion will mostly hit chemicals, medical equipment and energy products.

Trump has threatened to hit China with duties on another $50 billion of goods if it retaliates. China "has noticed the U.S. statement" and "reserves its rights to take corresponding measures," a government official said, according to Xinhua. — AP

June 15, 2018

China vows to "immediately" retaliate to US tariffs as Washington moved closer to imposing duties that could trigger a trade war.

"If the US side adopts unilateral protectionist measures and damages China's interests, we will immediately react and take necessary measures to firmly safeguard our legitimate rights and interests," says foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang during a regular news briefing.

US President Donald Trump is due to unveil later Friday a final list of Chinese imports that would face punishing tariffs, though the administration has not yet publicly said when the measures will be imposed. — AFP

June 15, 2018

President Donald Trump approves a plan to impose punishing tariffs on tens of billions of dollars of Chinese goods, a move that could put his trade policies on a collision course with his push to rid the Korean Peninsula of nuclear weapons.

Trump has long vowed to fulfill his campaign pledge to clamp down on what he considers unfair Chinese trading practices. But his calls for billions in tariffs could complicate his efforts to maintain China's support in his negotiations with North Korea. — AP

June 14, 2018

China's government says some Chinese exporters are rushing to fill orders due to concern about possible changes in trade risks.

The White House is preparing a list of Chinese goods targeted for a tariff hike, but the Commerce Ministry spokesman who made the comment Thursday didn't mention Washington and said those exporters are "not the mainstream."

The threatened U.S. tariff hikes are in response to complaints Beijing steals or pressures foreign companies to hand over technology.

Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said at a regular briefing, "a few companies have increased the number of 'short orders' to avoid risks. However, this is not the mainstream." — AP

June 7, 2018

The United States has reached a deal with Chinese telecommunications giant ZTE Corp. that includes a $1-billion fine, according to US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the Associated Press reports.

The fine comes on top of the roughly $1 billion ZTE has already paid for selling equipment to North Korea and Iran in violation of US sanctions.

Ross, speaking on CNBC on Thursday, said that ZTE also must put $400 million in escrow, which will be forfeited if there are any violations of the agreement.

Ross also said that a compliance team picked by the US will be embedded at ZTE and that the Chinese company must change its board and executive team in 30 days.

May 29, 2018

US President Donald Trump's hard-line views on trade, a staple of his message long before he entered politics, are beginning to collide with the cold realities of global geopolitics, The Associated Press reports.

Trade talks on China and the North American Free Trade Agreement have hit stumbling blocks, posing a challenge for a president who vowed to make trade deals more equitable for the United States during his 2016 campaign and who famously tweeted that trade wars are "easy to win."

May 21, 2018

The United States and China are pulling back from the brink of a trade war after the world's two biggest economies reported progress in talks aimed at bringing down America's massive trade deficit with Beijing, the Associated Press reports.

"We are putting the trade war on hold," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday.

May 8, 2018

China calls for US trade talks to be conducted on an equal footing, as Beijing's top economic official is due in Washington next week for more discussions on a dispute that could trigger tariffs on billions of dollars of goods this month.

The visit by Vice Premier Liu He -- considered President Xi Jinping's right-hand man on economic issues -- comes after he led talks in Beijing last week with a high-level US delegation that made little headway in resolving the standoff.

The meetings follow a series of tit-for-tat threats of tariffs on billions of dollars of goods sparked earlier this year by US President Donald Trump, who accuses China of using unfair practices to gain an advantage over US exporters costing American jobs. — AFP

May 8, 2018

China's exports rebounded last month from a brief downturn while its politically sensitive trade surplus with the United States expanded, according to official data released Tuesday.

Customs data show that exports jumped 21.5 percent from a year earlier in April, bouncing back from a contraction the previous month thanks to resurgent global demand.

Imports expanded 12.9 percent year-on-year in dollar terms, leaving the country's politically sensitive monthly trade surplus with the rest of the world at $28.8 billion, a turnaround from the previous month's $5 billion deficit.

China's trade surplus with the U.S. swelled to $22.2 billion, up from $15.4 the previous month, as its exports to the U.S. grew at double digit rates.

The latest figures come as China and the United States spar over Beijing's perennial trade surplus. — AP

May 5, 2018

President Donald Trump is tweeting the U.S. trade delegation is on its way back from China.

Trump says "we will be meeting tomorrow to determine the results, but it is hard for China in that they have become very spoiled with U.S. trade wins!"

The Trump administration wants China to reduce the trade deficit with the U.S. by $200 billion by the end of 2020. A U.S. official confirmed the authenticity of a document making that and other requests presented to China ahead of trade talks that ended in Beijing Friday.

The four-page list also included demands that China immediately stop providing subsidies to industries listed in a key industrial plan. The list also includes a demand that China end some of its policies related to technology transfers, a key source of tension underlying the dispute. — AP

April 12, 2018

The prospect of a trade war poses "downside risks" to the US economy, which otherwise is poised to grow at a solid pace, the Federal Reserve says.

While the Fed says the steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports that President Donald Trump imposed last month will not on their own have a significant effect, the possibility of "retaliatory trade actions by other countries" can be harmful.

April 10, 2018

China President Xi Jinping promised Tuesday to cut China's auto tariffs and improve intellectual property protection in possible concessions aimed at defusing a worsening dispute with Washington over trade and technology that investors worry could set back the global economic recovery, the Associated Press reports

April 6, 2018

President Donald Trump instructed the U.S. trade representative to consider slapping an additional $100 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods Thursday in a dramatic escalation of the trade dispute between the two countries.

Trump's surprise move came a day after Beijing announced plans to tax $50 billion in American products, including soybeans and small aircraft, in response to a U.S. move earlier this week to slap tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese imports.

And it intensified what was already shaping up to be the biggest trade battle since World War II. Global financial markets had fallen sharply as the world's two biggest economies squared off over Beijing's aggressive trade tactics. But they had calmed down Wednesday and Thursday on hopes the U.S. and China would find a diplomatic solution.

April 2, 2018

Forecasters say the impact of Monday's move should be limited, but investors worry the global recovery might be set back if other governments respond by raising import barriers, the Associated Press reports.

The tariffs "signal a most unwelcome development, which is that countries are becoming protectionist," says economist Taimur Baig of DBS Group. But in commercial terms, they are "not very substantial" compared with China's $150 billion in annual imports of U.S. goods, he says in an AP report.

Monday's tariff increase will hit American farm states, many of which voted for Trump in 2016.

April 2, 2018

China has raised import duties on a $3-billion list of U.S. pork, fruit and other products Monday in an escalating tariff dispute with President Donald Trump that companies worry might depress global commerce, the Associated Press reports.

The Finance Ministry said it was responding to a U.S. tariff hike on steel and aluminum that took effect March 23.

US President Donald Trump says North American neighbors Canada and Mexico will get no relief from his new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports unless a "new and fair" free trade agreement is signed.

The Trump administration says the tariffs are necessary to preserve the American industries—and that doing so is a national security imperative. But Trump's latest tweets suggest he's also using the upcoming tariffs as leverage in ongoing talks to revise the North American Free Trade Agreement. The latest round of a nearly year-long renegotiation effort is concluding this week in Mexico City. — Associated Press

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