Saturday, May 25th, 2024

China cries foul after America’s new tariffs; vows to protect its interests


While “firmly opposing” the new US tariffs, China warned that trade barriers would affect broader ties between the two economic superpowers and that Beijing would “resolutely work” to protect its interests, CNN reported.

China’s commerce ministry also said the move goes against US President Joe Biden’s earlier stance of not trying to ‘contain’ or ‘isolate’ Beijing.

It comes hours after Biden announced that tariffs on US$18 billion of imports of Chinese electric vehicles and a range of other products would increase over the next two years.

The White House said the measures were designed to protect American workers and businesses in the face of China’s unfair trade practices, including “flooding global markets with artificially low-priced exports.”

China “firmly opposes” the new tariffs, the country’s commerce ministry said in a statement.

It said, “The increase in tariffs by the United States runs contrary to President Joe Biden’s commitment to ‘not try to suppress and stifle China’s development’ and ‘not to try and sabotage relations with China.’ ” “This action will have a serious impact on the atmosphere of bilateral cooperation.”

The Chinese ministry further said Beijing will take “firm measures” to safeguard its rights and interests and urged the Biden administration to “correct its wrongdoings”.

Following the move, tariffs on EVs imported from China will quadruple from 27.5 per cent to 100 per cent.

According to CNN, the policy is aimed at challenging Beijing’s practice of encouraging aggressively low pricing by domestic EV makers while imposing a 40 percent tariff on US car imports.

Apart from EVs, the increased tariffs will be applicable on imports of Chinese steel and aluminium, old semiconductors, battery components, critical minerals, solar cells, cranes and medical products.

Tariffs on solar cells and semiconductors will double to 50 percent, while the remaining targeted imports will face a 25 percent duty.

“China opposes the imposition of unilateral tariffs that violate (World Trade Organization) rules, and will take all necessary actions to protect its legitimate rights,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told reporters shortly before the announcement. “

In particular, China’s global trade surplus has increased in recent years and is now approaching US$1 trillion, leading to increased tensions with the US and Europe.

The Biden administration and EU officials fear Beijing is trying to deal with the problem of subsidy-fueled overcapacity in its declining economy by dumping excess products on global markets, CNN reports.

Leaders of the G7 developed economies will discuss how to protect their industries over the issue at a summit next month.

Responding to a separate question during the briefing, Wang said the growth of China’s new energy industry – which includes EVs, lithium batteries and photovoltaic products – is driven by “continuous technological innovation, complete industrial and supply chains, and complete market competition.” based on. ,

“Our leading edge is the result of the combined rule of comparative advantage and markets, not subsidies,” Wang said.



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