Saturday, May 18, 2024

China protests against new US tariffs, promises to protect its interests

Must read

China warned that the trade barriers would affect the wider relationship between the two economic superpowers. (Representational)


“Firmly opposing” the new US tariffs, China warned that the trade barriers would affect the wider relationship between the two economic superpowers and Beijing will “resolutely work” to defend its interests, CNN reported.


China’s Commerce Ministry also said that the move is against US President Joe Biden’s earlier stand of not seeking to ‘contain’ or ‘decouple’ with Beijing.


This comes hours after Biden announced that tariffs on $ 18 billion worth of imports of Chinese electric vehicles and an array of other products would soar over the next two years.


The White House said the measures were designed to protect American workers and businesses in the face of China’s unfair trade practices, including “flooding global markets with artificially low-priced exports.”


China “firmly opposes” the new tariffs, the country’s Commerce Ministry said in a statement.


“The increase in…tariffs by the United States contradicts President Joe Biden’s commitment to ‘not seek to suppress and contain China’s development’ and ‘not to seek to decouple and break links with China,'” it said. “This action will seriously impact the atmosphere of bilateral cooperation.”


The Chinese Ministry further said Beijing would take “resolute measures” to defend its rights and interests and urged the Biden administration to “correct its wrongdoing.”


Following this move, EVs imported from China will see their tariffs more than quadrupled from 27.5 per cent to 100 per cent.


According to CNN, this policy lever is meant to challenge Beijing’s practice of encouraging aggressively low pricing by domestic EV manufacturers while levying a 40 per cent tariff on US car imports.


In addition to EVs, increased tariffs will apply to imports of Chinese steel and aluminium, legacy semiconductors, battery components, critical minerals, solar cells, cranes, and medical products.


Tariffs on solar cells and semiconductors will double to 50 per cent, while the remainder of the targeted imports will attract tariffs of 25 per cent.


“China opposes the unilateral imposition of tariffs which violate (World Trade Organization) rules, and will take all necessary actions to protect its legitimate rights,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin told reporters shortly before the announcement.


Notably, China’s global trade surplus in goods has soared in recent years and is now approaching $ 1 trillion, stoking tensions with the US and Europe.


The Biden administration and European Union officials fear Beijing is trying to tackle a subsidy-fuelled overcapacity problem in its decelerating economy by dumping excess products on global markets, as reported by CNN.


Leaders from the G7 developed economies will discuss how to protect their industries regarding this issue at a summit next month.


Responding to a separate question during the briefing, Wang added that the growth of China’s new energy industry — including EVs, lithium batteries and photovoltaic products — is built on “continued technical innovation, complete industrial and supply chains, and full-on market competition.”


“Our leading edge is a result of comparative advantage and the rule of markets combined, not (of) subsidies,” Wang said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: May 15 2024 | 8:03 AM IST

Latest article