Trump escalates trade war but BRI likely to be China’s ace

The Bridge
Apr 27, 2018
Americans Hurt by Trade Restrictions
Mercatus Scholars Track the Real World Effects of Ongoing Trade Disputes
Veronique de Rugy Senior Research Fellow @veroderugy Christine McDaniel Senior Research Fellow
Editor's Note: Owing to the evolving nature of ongoing trade disputes, this article will be updated periodically as new information on the effects of trade restrictions on the US economy becomes available. You can find additional updates at the bottom of the article. Latest Update, June 29: As a result of new import taxes on steel, the largest nail manufacturer in the United States is on the verge of closing. The Mid-Continent Nail company, based in Missouri, has already laid off 12 percent of its workforce due to higher costs. Even if it's able to stay open, it may be forced to move its plant to Mexico in order to stay competitive according to company spokesman James Glassman. Original article: In a recent op-ed, which is running in several outlets around the country, we make the case that many of the victims of President Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs are unseen but deserve some consideration. Here’s what we know about these tariffs:
· Tariffs are import taxes that raise prices for American manufacturers and households on many goods and services.
· Many Americans who suffer from tariffs remain invisible to policymakers in Washington.
· Industry participants may get direct access to policymakers, while a supermajority of everyday Americans watch from the outside.
· When everyday Americans buy household appliances, cars, and other goods made with steel and aluminum, they pay the price of new tariffs, even if they don’t realize it … for more, go to

Trump escalates trade war but BRI likely to be China’s ace

KUALA LUMPUR (July 2018): The global trade order has been jolted, rattled and rocked by the escalating US-China trade war.

Just when will the trigger-happy tariff-sanction slapping Donald Trump run out of ammo and call it quits?

Surely, there is an end to the tariff-slapping US. The question is when?

The Trump administration raised the stakes in its trade dispute with China today (July 11), threatening 10% tariffs on a list of US$200 billion (151 billion pounds) worth of Chinese imports, sending stocks lower and prompting Beijing to warn it would be forced to respond, according to a Reuters report.

The US is likely to be alienating itself from the rest of the world with its continuous tariff-slapping ways, but when is the end?

But one fact is certain. The rest of the world will continue to trade with China, no matter how Trump continues to slap tariffs on Chinese goods.

And, China will surely respond the same with the US and its goods and services.

In the end, it will only stress the peoples of both economies, and also inflict negative repercussions on the global economic order.

However, China is already laying the multi-trillion-dollar Belt Road Initiative (BRI) infrastructure which has to date inked deals with at least 69 cities and countries in Southeast Asia (SEA), Asia, Europe, the Scandinavian and Nordic countries, and the Middle-East - not forgetting Russia!

The million-dollar question, so to speak, is who will emerge as more resilient - the US or China?

Here’s the Reuters report on the US’ threat to slap another US$200 billion round of tariffs on China’s goods:

"U.S. ups China trade war ante, threatens tariffs on $200 billion of goods

Wednesday, 11 Jul 2018
2:01 PM MYT
By eric beechand stella qiu

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) - The Trump administration raised the stakes in its trade dispute with China, threatening 10 percent tariffs on a list of $200 billion (151 billion pounds) worth of Chinese imports, sending stocks lower and prompting Beijing to warn it would be forced to respond.

China's commerce ministry said on Wednesday it was "shocked" and would complain to the World Trade Organisation, but did not immediately say how it would retaliate. In a statement, it called the U.S. actions "completely unacceptable".

Beijing has said it would hit back against Washington's escalating tariff measures, including through "qualitative measures," a threat that U.S. businesses in China fear could mean anything from stepped-up inspections to delays in investment approvals and even consumer boycotts.

The $200 billion far exceeds the total value of goods China imports from the United States, which means Beijing may need to think of creative ways to respond to such U.S. measures.

It also includes consumer goods ranging from car tires, furniture, wood products, handbags and suitcases, to dog and cat food, baseball gloves, carpets, doors, bicycles, skis, golf bags, toilet paper and beauty products.

"For over a year, the Trump administration has patiently urged China to stop its unfair practices, open its market, and engage in true market competition," U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in announcing the proposed tariffs.

"Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against U.S. products ... There is no justification for such action," he said in a statement.

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 U.S. exports to China. Each side is planning tariffs on a further $16 billion in goods that would bring the totals to $50 billion.


Investors fear an escalating trade war between the world's two biggest economies could hit global growth and damage sentiment.

On Wednesday, the MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down about 1 percent, while the main indexes in Hong Kong and Shanghai recovered somewhat after falling more than 2 percent.

S&P 500 and Dow futures dropped around 1 percent, pointing to a weak opening on Wall Street later on Wednesday.

The onshore yuan tracked its offshore counterpart lower with traders closely watching the key 6.7 per dollar level as pressure mounted on the currency.

U.S. President Donald Trump has said he may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese goods - roughly the total amount of U.S. imports from China last year.

The new list published on Tuesday targets many more consumer goods than those covered under the tariffs imposed last week, raising the direct threat to consumers and retail firms and increasing the stakes for lawmakers in Trump's Republican party facing elections in November.

The list is subject to a two-month public comment period before taking effect.


Some U.S. business groups and lawmakers from Trump's own Republican Party were critical of the escalating tariffs.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch said the announcement "appears reckless and is not a targeted approach."

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has supported Trump's domestic tax cuts and efforts to reduce regulation of businesses, but does not back Trump's aggressive tariff policies.

"Tariffs are taxes, plain and simple. Imposing taxes on another $200 billion worth of products will raise the costs of every day goods for American families, farmers, ranchers, workers, and job creators. It will also result in retaliatory tariffs, further hurting American workers," a Chamber spokeswoman said.

Louis Kuijs, Hong Kong-based Head of Asia Economics at Oxford Economics, said while he expects China to strongly condemn the U.S. moves, its policy response is likely to be limited for now.

"In part because they have only limited ammunition and in part because it's still early in the process on the U.S. side," Kuijs said.

Trump has been following through on pledges he made during his presidential campaign to get tough on China, which he accuses of unfair trade practices including theft of intellectual property and forced technology transfer that have led to a $375 billion U.S. trade deficit with China.

China's exports have mushroomed since it joined the World Trade Organisation in 2001, making it the world's second-largest economy and prompting widening criticism in recent years from trading partners that it has unfairly used global trade rules to its advantage.

As its dispute with Washington deepened, Beijing has been calling on other countries to support global free trade and has talked up efforts to ease investment rules. During a visit to Germany this week by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, the countries signed business deals worth more than $23 billion.

(Reporting by Eric Beech in WASHINGTON, Elias Glenn and Stella Qiu in BEIJING; Writing by Tony Munroe; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Sam Holmes) - Reuters/The Star Online

China says it stands on the right side of history in protecting multilateralism

Wednesday, 11 Jul 2018
3:41 PM MYT
BEIJING (Reuters) - China stands on the right side of history in defending multilateralism, its foreign ministry said on Wednesday, after U.S. President Donald Trump's administration threatened 10 percent tariffs on $200 billion (150.66 billion pounds) worth of Chinese imports. - Reuters/The Star Online

China Vows Not to Fire Tariff Shot Ahead of U.S. in Trade War
Bloomberg News
July 4, 2018, 11:52 AM GMT+8 Updated on July 4, 2018, 7:14 PM GMT+8
China said that it wouldn’t implement tariffs ahead of the U.S. on Friday, after previous arrangements put it on course to do so. "We will never fire the first shot and will not implement tariffs ahead of the U.S.," the Ministry of Finance said in a statement late Wednesday, after media reported that Beijing would start levying tariffs hours ahead of the U.S. due to the time zone difference. Bloomberg earlier reported that China would start applying the duties from midnight on Friday -- midday on July 5 in Washington -- according to two officials with knowledge of the plans. The Chinese customs service had adjusted their systems so the new tariffs would start being charged as soon as the clock ticks over to July 6 in Beijing, according to one of the people.
Everything You Need to Know About the Burgeoning Trade War
Beijing time is 12 hours ahead of Washington. A statement issued by the China’s State Council on June 16 said that retaliatory extra duties on $34 billion of U.S. imports are set to take effect on July 6. The U.S. Trade Representative’s statement from June 15 said that Customs and Border Protection would begin collecting their additional duties from July 6. Neither nation specified a time. In the brewing trade war between the U.S. and China, Beijing officials consistently seek to portray their nation as simply being on the defensive against Donald Trump’s aggressive tactics. — With assistance by Miao Han, Yinan Zhao, and Xiaoqing Pib … for Bloomberg’s VIDEO presentation, go to