China Tariffs on US Crude Not Game-Changing Event

Announcing the new duties, the US Trade Representatives Office: "China directs and unfairly facilitates the systematic investment in, and acquisition of, US companies and assets to generate large-scale technology transfer".

Beijing has announced plans to retaliate immediately against the latest round of United States tariffs on Chinese imports by slapping a wide range of American products, worth $16 billion, with a 25 percent levy.

The action is the latest by U.S. President Donald Trump to put pressure on China to negotiate trade concessions after imposing tariffs on $34 billion in goods last month. The U.S. announced earlier this week that its own tariffs on US$16 billion of Chinese goods would start that day.

In July, the Chinese trade surplus with the U.S. dropped three percent, reports South China Morning Post.

China said it is targeting 333 products, including crude oil, coal, diesel, cars, bicycles, medical equipment, steel products, scrap metals and waste paper, as well as fish meal. At the same time, China has lowered its tariff on Canadian lobster imports to 7 percent, making them more attractive to Chinese buyers.

Crude oil prices are under pressure because a tariff on imported USA crude oil means a drop in demand.

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China, however, would run out of US imports to levy, as it bought only $130 billion worth of American goods a year ago.

Beijing has retaliated with its own duties on $34bn of USA goods. Those duties could be in place after a comment period ends on 6 September.

President Donald Trump has suggested he may tax effectively all imports of Chinese goods, which reached more than $500 billion a year ago.

Analysts from Oxford Economics have predicted that China's GDP growth may slow to 6.4 per cent this year, from 6.9 per cent in 2017, as the effects of the trade war weigh. A third and further damaging round is proposed on an eye-watering $200 billion worth of trade, around $1 billion of which is said to be bicycle related goods.

Chinese state media has said Beijing will not be cowed by Washington's threats. It would likely have to impose penalties on USA companies doing business in China to make up the difference.

Trump's mission to reduce the U.S. trade deficit via the threat of tariffs has brought him into conflict with China as well as USA allies, roiling financial markets and raising fears of a global trade war the International Monetary Fund has warned may undermine the strongest economic upswing in years.

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