US, China tariffs may be 'new normal'

The Latest: Sec. Ross: Americans won't feel trade-war sting

The Latest: Sec. Ross: Americans won't feel trade-war sting

By cutting duties on goods even as it retaliates against President Donald Trump's trade war with higher charges on some US goods, China is following through on long-stated goals to boost imports.

President Trump announced the new tariffs on Monday. Clearly, a negative development for the sake of the world economy, as it increases uncertainty for companies and risks hurting global trade if these trade restrictions are made permanent. (It's the importer who pays the tariffs.) The same goes for U.S. exports to China, which are only one-sixth of total American exports.

In July, China cut import tariffs on nearly 1,500 consumer products ranging from cosmetics to home appliances as part of efforts to open up its economy, the world's second biggest. We're now talking about tariffs on just about half of everything we get from China.

The U.S. Trade Representative's office has received 6,000 written comments, mostly in oppositions, since announced his tariff plans.

The U.S. administration appears to be baffled by this. China's leaders ought to see that, for the most part, they dovetail with their own stated ambitions to make the economy more productive through competition and reform.

The three major themes dominate the US-China Business Council's 2018 member survey outcomes included the following.

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"The downward spiral that we have previously warned about now seems certain to materialize", Zarit said at the time.

But, it added "the likelihood of de-escalation will rise over time as the increasing economic impact in the US will make the Trump team less combative, and China realises that it will be hard to integrate more into the global economy without some concessions regarding its specific economic model". The same applies to potential U.S. job losses due to declining exports to China: they won't happen fast enough to have any impact on November's mid-term elections in the United States.

"Trade is not a weapon and can not be used for wars", he added. Officials have not confirmed if the US would be affected by the move.

China remains an important market for American companies despite the challenges.

"What that means is that the way the world's economy has evolved has left the US out of the loop", he said. Doing it quickly will make things volatile and somewhat scary, but that may not be the case were it done in the long run, but he said in the long run there could well be another 2009-like crisis, which could be worse than last time.

Trump had warned that retaliation by China would trigger tariffs on another $267 billion of Chinese goods, on top of duties on $250 billion in imports that are already in place or threatened. "In the long run, I think it will work out well, as both China and the US stand to gain tremendously by coming to good terms".

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