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Trump, US, China trade war: new tariffs in place, talks go nowhere

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President Donald
Trump

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  • President Donald Trump’s trade war kicked up another
    notch on Thursday with new tariffs on another $16 billion worth
    of Chinese goods.
  • The new tariffs come as the US and China continue
    negotiations in Washington — their first talks since
    June.
  • But according to a senior administration official, the
    Americans aren’t seeing much progress in the talks.

The trade war between the US and China took another step forward
Thursday, and the chances of a resolution still appear far away.

At midnight, the US imposed a 25% tariff on $16 billion worth of
Chinese goods coming into the US — and China responded in kind.
That brings the total among of goods flowing between the
countries subject to tariffs up to $106 billion, or roughly
17% of
all US-China trade
.

At the same time, a senior Trump administration official
talked down the chances for substantial progress in the
current round of US-China trade talks
.

“In order for us to get a positive result out of these
engagements, it’s really critical that they address the
fundamental concerns that we have raised,” the administration
official said on a call with reporters. “We haven’t seen that
yet, but we are going to continue to encourage them to address
problems that we have raised.”

The negotiations between the two countries are the first
formal talks since June, when Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross went
to Beijing.

The Trump administration is hoping to force China to make
major adjustments to its economic policies, including lowering
existing tariffs and curtailing the alleged theft of US
intellectual property by Chinese firms. In addition, Trump wants
to slash the large US trade deficit with China.

Given the large scale goals, the senior administration
official downplayed any possibility of a formal announcement
coming out of the talks, which are scheduled to wrap up
Thursday.

“We hope that they will take seriously the concerns raised
and that can put us on a better posture, both with respect to the
issues that have been raised but also with the broader trade
relationship,” the official said.

Trade experts weren’t putting too much stock in the
meeting, but the lack of progress cements expectations that the
trade war’s end is nowhere in sight.

The US Trade Representative’s office is moving forward with
another set of tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods,
and according to reports
Trump wants to dig in
and extract more concessions from the
Chinese.

The longer the fight continues, the more likely that the US
economy and
businesses get hurt
. American firms have reported increased
prices due to the tariffs, forcing them to make hard choices such
as delaying expansion plans or laying off workers.

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