Trump says U.S. under 'no pressure' for China trade deal

Sep 15, 2018, 03:23
Trump says U.S. under 'no pressure' for China trade deal

A public comment period also ended last week for the $200 billion tariff list, which would hit various internet technology products and other electronics, printed circuit boards and consumer goods ranging from handbags to bicycles and furniture.

Almost half of respondents - who work in retail, food and manufacturing - say production costs have climbed, and 42 percent said they've noticed a decreased demand for their products.

Trump threatened a third tranche of tariffs on another $267 billion of Chinese imports last week, which would mean levying duties on almost everything China exports to the U.S. Trump said at the time those tariffs were "ready to go on short notice", but the administration hasn't yet published a list for public comment.

Sixty-four percent of companies that responded to the AmCham survey, which was conducted between August 29 and September 5, said the first round of tariffs that Trump slapped on $50 billion in Chinese imports this year have negatively affected their operations, while 63 percent said the same about the equal amount of duties Beijing imposed in retaliation. He responded that he wasn't, two of the people said. Financial markets have been whipsawed this week by conflicting reports on the status of trade talks between the world's two largest economies.

On Wednesday, more than 60 USA industry groups launched a coalition - Americans for Free Trade - to take the fight against the tariffs public.

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Chamber president Alan Beebe said the poll would provide officials in Washington and Beijing with facts on how the tariffs are playing out.

Orit Frenkel, a former US Trade Representative official and president of consulting firm Frenkel Strategies, also said Trump may feel pressure to reach agreements to avoid continuing the trade war with the midterms fast approaching, but that he would want to see significant concessions from China before backing down.

About 30 per cent said they were adjusting supply chains by seeking to source components and/or assembly outside the USA, and about the same number were seeking to source components and/or assembly outside China.

A series of companies want President Trump to know that tariffs are hurting US industries.

Beijing has vowed further response if the United States imposes new tariffs. "The US administration will be hurting the companies it should be helping".

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More than 52 per cent of respondents to the survey reported already suffering the consequences of such measures, mainly through increased inspections, slower customs clearance and "other complications from increased bureaucratic oversight or regulatory scrutiny". They said almost one-third are thinking about canceling or postponing investment decisions.

"I think most of us think it's better to talk than not to talk, and I think the Chinese government is willing to talk", Kudlow said.

China may not be able to match future USA tariffs dollar for dollar and has warned that it would take other measures.

A worker places U.S. and China flags near the Forbidden City ahead of a visit by U.S. President Donald Trump to Beijing, in Beijing, China November 8, 2017. Some of them have criticized Trump's tactics but many echo US complaints about Chinese market barriers and industrial strategy.

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