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Dublin: 17 °C Wednesday 24 July, 2019
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US more than doubles tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods

China has pledged “necessary countermeasures” to the 25% tariffs.

Trump said he received a
Trump said he received a "beautiful letter" this week from Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Image: Andy Wong/PA

THE UNITED STATES has increased tariffs on Chinese products from 10% to 25% despite negotiations between the two countries aimed at resolving their trade war.

US President Donald Trump got a briefing from his trade negotiators after the first day of talks with the Chinese side but made no move to hold off on the threatened tariffs.

The Chinese commerce ministry said it “deeply regrets” the decision taken by the US to increase tariffs on $200 billion (€178bn) in imports from China and repeated its pledge to take “necessary countermeasures”.

The two countries have been locked in this trade dispute for more than a year, exchanging tariffs on more than $360 billion (€320bn) in imports. This has gutted US agricultural exports and weighed on both countries’ manufacturing sectors. 

Despite optimism from officials in recent weeks that the talks were moving towards a deal, tensions reignited this week after Trump angrily accused China of trying to backpedal on its commitments.

“They took many, many parts of that deal and they renegotiated. You can’t do that,” Trump said yesterday.

However he said he held out hopes of salvaging a deal.

“It’s possible to do it,” Trump said. “I did get last night a very beautiful letter from President Xi (Jinping).”

At the same time, he said he would be equally satisfied to simply keep tariffs in place. And he has threatened to extend the tough duties to all Chinese goods.

The International Monetary Fund has called for a rapid resolution, warning that the trade battle was a “threat” to global growth.

- With reporting from AFP.

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