China on Friday stated that, as a result of President Donald Trump’s plans to raise tariff levels on Chinese goods, it would impose retaliatory tariffs on $60 billion worth of U.S. imports. The announcement is expected to further escalate the trade tensions between the two biggest economies on the planet.
According to Reuters, the Chinese Ministry of Finance stated that it would impose tariffs on 5,207 American goods upward of 25 percent if the Trump administration follows through with its threats to hit Beijing with 25 percent tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese imports.
“The United States has deviated from the consensus of the two sides on several occasions, unilaterally escalating trade frictions, seriously violating the rules of the World Trade Organization, undermining the global industrial chain and the free trade system, substantially harming the interests of our country and the people, and will also include the United States,” the Chinese statement said.
Earlier this week Trump ordered U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to consider imposing a 25 percent tax on $200 billion worth of imported Chinese goods, up from the initially proposed 10 percent rate.
“If the U.S. is willing to go its own way and implement its tariff increase measures, China will implement the above-mentioned tariff increase measures,” China said.
China also stated that it would “defend its legitimate rights and interests, and to counter the escalation of trade friction through counter-measures” and would move forward with tariffs from 5 to 25 percent on $60 billion of U.S. imports if the U.S. follows through with its threats.
“Instead of retaliating, China should address the longstanding concerns about its unfair trading practices, many of which are laid out in USTRs 301 report,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders responded to China.