China Threatens "Countermeasures" If Donald Trump Hikes Tariffs

US President Donald Trump speaks to the media prior to departing from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington DC

Trump vowed to impose a 10% tariff on $300 billion of Chinese imports from September 1st, escalating a bruising and protracted trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

Global stocks took another beating on Friday with investors piling into safe-haven assets after US President Donald Trump said he would slap a 10% tariff on the remaining $300 billion of Chinese imports starting September 1. "This does not include the 250 Billion Dollars already Tariffed at 25%", Trump tweeted.

The sale was the first to a private buyer since Beijing offered to exempt five Chinese soybean importers from the 25 percent retaliatory tariffs China imposed on USA goods roughly a year ago. She didn't elaborate on what the measures would be.

Trump says China has used a state-directed economic model to harm the American economy, unfairly subsidizing production and stealing intellectual property.

"Equity markets are predictably diving upon news of the additional tariffs".

The Stoxx Europe 600 index slumped at the open in a catch-up move to benchmarks on Wall Street and in Asia. The previous month was revised higher to 0.5%.

Guterres spoke shortly before Trump's tweet on tariffs against China. "Deal or no deal, China is prepared for the worst-case scenario". He also said Beijing had not fulfilled a goodwill pledge to buy more USA agricultural products.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday (local time) at the White House, Mr Trump complained that Mr Xi is "not moving fast enough".

Research firm Oxford Economics said: "We expect this step to make China less keen to achieve a deal and more determined to prepare itself for long-term economic tension with the United States".

Possible retaliatory measures by China could include tariffs, a ban on the export of rare earths and penalties against US companies in China, analysts say.

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"President Trump is, in effect, using American families as a hostage in his trade war negotiations", said Matt Priest, president of the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America.

The yuan fell to its weakest level against the dollar this year after Trump announced fresh tariffs on China overnight, with USD/CNY inching closer towards the 7.00 level. "Because what they do is, they devalue their currency and they push money out", he said. "We absolutely must be tough on China". China retaliated to that move by taxing $110 billion in USA goods dealing a blow to U.S. farmers. Following the meeting, news reports said that China was taking a slow-motion approach to negotiations and may be stalling for time, perhaps hoping that they will be able to deal with a less aggressive Democratic president after the 2020 election.

Trump made his threat in a series of Twitter posts after his top trade negotiators briefed him on a lack of progress in U.S.

Trump rejected the advice of Mnuchin and ruled out giving Beijing advance notice of the tariffs during a White House meeting shortly before announcing the move in a tweet.

Trump's decision has thrown the Federal Reserve another curve ball that may force it to again cut interest rates to protect the United States economy from trade-policy risks after its first rate cut in more than a decade on Wednesday.

The U.S. Trade Representative's Office said it will release the final, official list of products to receive the higher taxes in the coming days.

"We don't want to fight, but we aren't afraid to", Hua said at a regular news briefing. But the tariffs have failed to do that.

"The U.S. side should make positive efforts, show sincerity and goodwill, and create a good atmosphere for the consultations", Gao said.

The Chinese foreign and commerce ministries didn't immediately respond to questions about how Beijing would react.

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