|[Published: Wednesday July 11 2018]
China 'shocked' by US escalation of trade tariffs
BEIJING 11 Jul (ANA) - China said it is "shocked" after the US announced plans for fresh tariffs, escalating a trade war between the two countries.
The US listed $200bn (£150bn) worth of additional products it intends to place tariffs on as soon as September.
The move comes just days after the two countries imposed tit-for-tat tariffs of $34bn on each other's goods.
Beijing described Washington's latest threat as "totally unacceptable," saying it would harm the world.
"The behaviour of the US is hurting China, hurting the world and hurting itself," a spokesperson for China's commerce ministry said in a statement.
The spokesperson also said the government would have to take the "necessary counter-measures".
The list names more than 6,000 items including food products, minerals and consumer goods such as handbags.
The public will have until the end of August to comment on the list before the new tariffs - to be imposed at 10% - come into effect.
Asian stock markets fell sharply on Wednesday as investors shunned risk amid escalating trade tensions between the two economic giants.
In China, Hong Kong's Hang Seng index dropped 1.5%, while the Shanghai Composite fell 1.8%. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index shed 1.2%.
The White House says the tariffs are a response to unfair trade practices by China.
The US wants China to stop practices that allegedly encourage transfer of intellectual property - design and product ideas - to Chinese companies, such as requirements that foreign firms share ownership with local partners to access the Chinese market.
US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said there was "no justification" for China's retaliation.
"As in the past, the United States is willing to engage in efforts that could lead to a resolution of our concerns about China's unfair trade practices and to China opening its market to US goods and services," he said.
"In the meantime, we will remain vigilant in defending the ability of our workers and businesses to compete on a fair and reciprocal basis."(ANA)
FA/ANA/11 July 2018-------