Ready to tax an additional $267B in Chinese imports

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Mike Segar Reuters

They will "take place very soon, depending on what happens", he said about the new tariffs, in comments made to reporters while aboard Air Force One en route to Fargo, North Dakota. "And I hate to say this, but behind that is another $267bn ready to go on short notice if I want". "That totally changes the equation".

If eventually carried out, the president's latest threat would result in tariffs on all Chinese goods entering the United States, an unprecedented escalation of Trump's trade war with China.

The administration should cease further tariffs actions and give another shot at talks for a trade deal with China, it said.

Members of the public had until Thursday to comment on the administration's plan to slap tariffs on US$200 billion of Chinese goods, ranging from bicycles and baseball gloves to digital cameras, paving the way for Trump to announce the tariffs as early as Friday. Kudlow's comments indicated the U.S. is looking for a deal with China to end the trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

Mr Trump has boasted that trade wars are "easy to win" and warned he would hit virtually all Chinese imports if Beijing does not back down and take steps to reduce its US$335 billion surplus with the US.

The trade war the president has initiated between the world's two largest economies stems from concerns that China has deployed predatory tactics - including cyber-theft - to try to supplant America's technological supremacy. Those tactics, the Office of the US Trade Representative has alleged, include stealing trade secrets through computer hacking and forcing US companies to hand over technology in exchange for access to the Chinese market. It would also be in addition to tariffs his administration has already imposed on $50 billion in Chinese imports, for which Beijing has retaliated with an equal amount of import taxes on US goods.

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President Donald Trump is raising the stakes in his gamble that the world will line up behind the U.S. to take on China over trade.

Trump's threatened tariffs, now totalling $517 billion in Chinese goods, would exceed the $505 billion in goods imported from China a year ago.

And China has vowed to hit $60bn in USA products in retaliation. And China has vowed to hit $60 billion in USA products in retaliation.

If the president followed through with all his proposed tariffs, essentially every good being imported from China would be taxed.

"We will evaluate the comments and we will make a decision", Kudlow said, suggesting it could be some time before the fresh import charges will be levied.

"We are still talking with China on a number of issues".

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