United States eyes tariffs on $200B more Chinese imports

European exporters shift trade to avoid higher US tariffs

On Tuesday, the Trump administration announced that it would assess an additional 10 percent tariff on up to $200 billion of Chinese goods.

Last week, Washington imposed 25 percent tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports, and Beijing responded immediately with matching tariffs on the same amount of US exports to China.

The trade confrontation between Washington and Beijing has been escalating for months, despite Trump's repeated statements that he has a good relationship with China's President Xi Jinping. But China only bought about $135 billion in US goods past year, meaning it will run out of American products to tax before it matches Trump's latest move.

Asian stocks remained under pressure on Thursday from fears of an escalation in the US-China trade war, while the dollar stood stall after rallying against its peers amid the turmoil in broader markets.

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The goal is to bring the total amount of Chinese imports up to 40 per cent of the total imported from the Asian power, since the U.S. products hit by Beijing's retaliation represent that share of exports, an official told reporters in a conference call.

"Although I have supported the administration's targeted efforts to combat China's technology transfer regime, tonight's announcement appears reckless and is not a targeted approach", Hatch said in a statement.

The intensifying trade war between the world's biggest economies was also a drag on commodity markets.

The new round of tariffs targets more than 6000 trade lines including a wide range of low-end manufactured products from handbags, textiles, tires, leather goods, ski gloves to refrigerators to TVs.

They warned tariffs on imports raise consumer prices and expose US farmers and manufacturers to retaliation.

The tariffs will not be imposed until after a two-month period of public comment on the proposed list, but some United States business groups and senior lawmakers were quick to criticise the move.

The White House says the tariffs are a response to unfair trade practices by China.

"Tariffs are taxes, plain and simple".

National Retail Federation senior Vice President for Government Relations David French said the move "doubles down on a reckless strategy that will boomerang back to harm US families and workers". Tit-for-tat tariffs already are raising the cost of some goods, such as washing machines, while industry groups warn of potential price hikes for cars, electronics and other items.

His administration has already imposed tariffs on aluminum and steel imports from the EU, Mexico and Canada at the end of May, prompting Ottawa to retaliate in kind against some U.S. exports. "Consumers, businesses and the American jobs dependent on trade, are left in the crosshairs of an escalating global trade war". "China does steal intellectual property, they do engage in unfair trade practices", he said. Mr Tusk added "we spend on defence much more than Russian Federation and as much as China".