United States threatens China with tariffs over alleged theft of trade secrets

May 31, 2018, 18:15
United States threatens China with tariffs over alleged theft of trade secrets

So much for being "on hold".

She urged the USA to "follow the spirit" of the recent consensus reached between Washington and Beijing, to abandon trade wars and back off imposing tariffs on each other. But a US official said that according to instructions sent to USA embassies and consulates, Chinese graduate students will be limited to one-year visas if they are studying in fields like robotics, aviation and high-tech manufacturing.

Earlier this month, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who was on a visit to China over trade negotiations said that the trade war with China was "on hold", with both sides agreeing to remove the proposed tariffs.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is set to go to Beijing this week to negotiate on how China might buy more American goods to reduce the huge U.S. trade deficit with Beijing, which previous year totaled $375 billion.

The move signals a move back to offense on China's CM2025 project.

In January 2018, the Trump Administration found that China's overproduction of steel and aluminum, and the resulting impact on global markets, threaten America's national security.

In return, the Commerce Department lifted a seven-year ban on ZTE's purchase of USA components that it had just imposed earlier in May. The White House said it also would impose restrictions on Chinese investment and purchases of high-tech exports.

The final list of imports covered by the new duty will be announced by 15 June, and tariffs will be imposed on those imports shortly thereafter, it said.

After the latest round, in which Vice-Premier Liu He led a delegation to Washington, a joint statement proclaimed a consensus on measures to reduce the trade imbalance.

Trade tensions between Washington and Beijing are likely to generate uncertainty with potentially serious consequences for the Chinese economy, Alfred Schipke, senior resident representative in China of the International Monetary Fund, told a press briefing.

The moves come after the Chinese government and Trump administration officials agreed to the outline of a trade truce earlier this month.

The White House outline for imposing the tariffs announced on Tuesday "represents the kind of actions we have needed to take for a long time", Schumer said in an emailed statement, adding, "But the president must stick with it and not bargain it away". "It is obviously against the consensus reached by the USA and China in Washington recently".

Beijing will take "resolute and forceful" measures to protect its interests if the USA insists upon acting in an "arbitrary and reckless manner", a foreign ministry spokeswoman said, Reuters reports.

But when Trump subsequently said he would ease penalties against ZTE in order to save Chinese jobs, this drew a sharp backlash from his supporters. "President Obama, Bush, Clinton lost this when we got into bad trade deals like NAFTA".

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