What to know about growing US-China trade tensions

US fruit was on display in a supermarket in Beijing on Monday. China imposed tariffs on a selection of US goods Monday in response to President Trump’s tariffs on steel and aluminum

China raises tariffs on $50B of US soybeans, other goods

US President Donald Trump, who has long charged that his predecessors served the United States badly in trade matters, rejected the notion that the tit-for-tat moves amounted to a trade war between the world's two economic superpowers.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said China's response isn't expected to disrupt the US economy.

"It wouldn't be surprising at all if the net outcome of all this is some sort of a negotiation", Ross added "It's very hard to put a specific time denomination on negotiations that are as complex as these". He said the US isn't entering "World War III" and left the door open for a negotiated solution. "However, imposing taxes on products used daily by American consumers and job creators is not the way to achieve those ends", said Myron Brilliant, head of global affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

China's Ministry of Commerce said Wednesday that it would impose tariffs of 25 percent on 106 types of US products worth $50 billion, including soybeans, aircraft and automobiles. This could be accomplished by reducing Chinese exports to the USA, by raising the number of US goods China imports, or a combination of both. The effective date of China's moves depends on when the US action takes effect. Markets dipped sharply as news of China's plans emerged.

Trump later tweeted that "when you're already $500 Billion DOWN, you can't lose", in a possible reference to America's trade deficit with China.

Last year, the USA ran a $375 billion trade deficit in goods with China.

Kotok said the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act of 1930 helped turn a recession into the worst depression in US history.

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Shi Yinhong, a professor of global affairs at Renmin University in Beijing, said that China's move has signaled the country's willingness to go "tit for tat" in a trade war.

US beef producers had only recently seen a restoration of sales to China after being shut out since 2003. But the tariffs on both sides remain only threats and plans.

There's absolutely no trade war happening right now between China and the U.S.

The news comes after China announced tariffs worth US$50 billion on a series of U.S. products including soybeans, whiskey and cars as a response to retaliatory tariffs from the United States in an escalating dispute over China's technology programme and other trade issues. He said on Wednesday that he supports President Trump's decision.

Both sides have calibrated their current actions around the figure of $50 billion worth of imports. Barriers to trade would obviously hurt US exporters.

But last month, Trump accused China of continuing to conduct and support "unauthorized intrusions into, and theft from" USA company networks when announcing new tariffs on China - raising the specter that Beijing may have run afoul of the agreement. "We believe both countries have the ability and wisdom to address the problem", Zhu said.

The items on the list, which includes mostly high-tech industrial, medical, aerospace, communication and transportation products, would face a 25% tariff.

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The US exports 62 percent of its soybeans and 25 percent of Boeing aircraft to China, according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

Still, U.S. stock futures slumped over concerns that the back-and-forth tariff actions will stunt trade and growth.

In retaliation for Trump's earlier steel and aluminium tariffs, China on Monday imposed tariffs on US$3 billion (NZ$4.1 billion) worth of United States products, including pork, wine and citrus.

China's aim to become dominant in 10 advanced industries through its "Made in China 2025" plan-especially manufacturing of semiconductors and integrated circuit boards-puts the country in fierce competition with companies in the West.

Trump pointed to the alleged theft of intellectual property by China that he said is "probably in the neighbourhood of $200 to $300bn".

In response to the March 22 presidential order, USTR publishes the provisional list of imports that would be subject to new duties in retaliation for "the forced transfer of American technology and intellectual property".

Wednesday's announcement means there are now two U.S.

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