China says Trump forces its hand, will retaliate against new US tariffs

Beijing, Sep 18 (INP): China said on Tuesday that it has no choice but to retaliate against new U.S. trade tariffs, raising the risk that President Donald Trump could soon impose duties on virtually all of the Chinese goods that America buys.

The commerce ministry’s statement came hours after Trump said he was imposing 10 percent tariffs on about $200 billion worth of imports from China, and threatened duties on about $267 billion more if China retaliated against the U.S. action.

The brief statement gave no details on China’s plans, but Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told a daily news briefing later that the U.S. steps had brought “new uncertainty” to talks between the two countries.

“China has always emphasized that the only correct way to resolve the China-U.S. trade issue is via talks and consultations held on an equal, sincere and mutually respectful basis. But at this time, everything the United States does not give the impression of sincerity or goodwill,” he added.

Geng said he would not comment on “hypotheticals” such as what measures Beijing might consider apart from tariffs on U.S. products, saying only that details would be released at the appropriate time.

Trump had warned on Monday that if China takes retaliatory action against U.S. farmers or industries, “we will immediately pursue phase three, which is tariffs on approximately $267 billion of additional imports.”

Inp/khan