08/08/2018, 10.17
CHINA-USA
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Duties on 50 billion Chinese imports starting from 23 August

The new customs taxes, of 25%, are added to those launched in July. They are in response "to the unfair business practices of China, such as the forced transfer of technologies and intellectual property rights". New taxes are expected for 200 billion Chinese products.

Washington (AsiaNews) - A statement from the US Department for Trade and Commerce announced that from next August 23, 50 billion of imported Chinese products will be taxed at 25%. This new wave of duties is added to the one launched on July 6th on 34 billion Chinese imports.

The Department also explained that these actions are in response "to the unfair business practices of China, such as forced technology transfer and intellectual property rights". The new tariffs will hit about 279 products and their list will be published soon, the statement said.

The "tariff war" broke out at the end of March, when Washington imposed 25% tarriffs on steel and 10% on Chinese aluminum. On July 6th there was the imposition of additional taxes on 34 billion dollars of Chinese imports. Beijing responded by taxing the same amount of imports from the US. Last month, President Donald Trump threatened to impose punitive tariffs on all Chinese products for over $ 500 billion.

At the beginning of August, Robert Lighthizer, US Trade Representative, confirmed the rumors that Trump would like to apply 25% tariffs on 200 billion of goods imported from China.

Chinese society is very divided on Beijing's stance on the issue and there seems to be a fracture within the leadership. Some commentators think the tariff war is a defeat for Xi Jinping.

Global investors fear that an increasingly tough trade war between Washington and Beijing could affect global economic growth.

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