09/13/2018, 13.27
CHINA – UNITED STATES
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Beijing wants to impose duties worth US$ 7 billion on the United States

Beijing made the request to the World Trade Organisation complaining about US anti-dumping methodologies. For Zhou Xiaochuan, former governor of the People's Bank of China, the main negative effect of duties will be market uncertainty, affecting investor confidence in China.

Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Beijing is planning to impose trade sanctions worth around US$ 7 billion on US goods in retaliation for Washington’s failure to comply with a dispute ruling by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in 2017 over the methodology it uses in anti-dumping investigations.

China has filed its request for authorisation to introduce the penalties. The WTO’s dispute settlement body will rule on 21 September.

China and the US have been embroiled in a battle over anti-dumping duties at the WTO since 2013. The US has taken aim at Chinese government aid to exports, which make Chinese goods more competitive on foreign markets.

China’s complaint centres on the methodologies adopted by the US Department of Commerce to calculate the scale of dumping involving Chinese products. The WTO asked Washington to make changes by August 2018, but this has not happened.

Beijing’s move is another chapter in the trade war between the two economic giants with both trying to impose duties on each other's exports.

Washington has already imposed levies on US$ 50 billion of Chinese goods and is ready to slap more tariffs on a further US$ 200 billion of goods.

US President Donald Trump last week threatened to impose more levies on an additional US$ 267 billion of Chinese goods, in practice all of China’s exports to the US.

According to Zhou Xiaochuan, former governor of the People's Bank of China, the direct impact of the tariff war on the Chinese economy will "not be very serious". Economists have put the potential impact at 0.3 to 0.5 percentage points.

However, the unpredictability of the dispute and its impact on investor confidence in China are much more difficult to analyse, said Zhou.

According to the Wall Street Journal, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin invited Chinese Deputy Prime Minister Liu He to resume trade negotiations in the coming weeks, after several attempts failed in the past few months.

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