Trump draws ire of farmers targeted in trade dispute

Donald Trump holds his signed memorandum on intellectual property tariffs on high-tech goods from China at the White House

Donald Trump holds his signed memorandum on intellectual property tariffs on high-tech goods from China at the White House

Vice premier Liu He told United States treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin in a phone call that Washington's investigation into alleged Chinese infringement of U.S. intellectual property violates global rules and will harm the interests of both countries, the official Xinhua News reported on Saturday.

In his call with Mr. Mnuchin, Mr. Liu, a Harvard-trained economist, said China still hoped both sides would remain "rational" and jointly work together to keep trade relations stable, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

On Thursday, US President Donald Trump imposed massive trade tariffs amounting to United States dollars 60 billion on China, in a move that could escalate into a global trade war, given the accelerating trade tensions between the two countries.

Trump is planning to impose the tariffs for what he says is misappropriation of US intellectual property.

China showed readiness to retaliate by declaring plans to levy additional duties on up to $3 billion USA of American imports including fruit and wine in response to USA import tariffs on steel and aluminum, which were due to go into effect on Friday.

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However, Mr. Liu said the investigation report "violates worldwide trade rules and is beneficial to neither Chinese interests, US interests nor global interests", Xinhua cited him as saying.

Both sides agreed to continue to communicate on the matter, Xinhua added.

Targeting $3 billion of U.S. imports, China has drawn a list of 128 U.S. products that could be hit with tariffs if the two countries are unable to reach an agreement on trade issues, the ministry said.

A former Chinese finance minister said at the China Development Forum in Beijing that the commerce ministry's response so far had been relatively weak.

Lou, now chairman of the National Council for Social Security Fund (NCSSF), was speaking at the annual China Development Forum in Beijing on Saturday.

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Following a thorough analysis of available evidence, USTR, with the assistance of the interagency Section 301 committee, prepared findings showing that, among other acts, policies, and practices, China uses discriminatory licensing requirements to transfer technologies from U.S. companies to Chinese companies. The Chinese move appeared to be a warning shot aimed at increasing domestic United States pressure on Trump by making clear which exporters, including farm areas that voted for the president in 2016, might be hurt.

Overall, the nation's farmers shipped almost $20 billion of goods to China in 2017. "The anticipation of the tax cuts and now the implementation of the cuts are stimulating the USA economy at a late point of the cycle so it is natural for the US trade deficit to grow". "It does not need to be done publicly; it can be done privately". The list is expected to be published within two weeks, then subject to a 30-day comment period and potential revisions by the U.S. Trade Representative's office after that period ends.

China's retaliation against the USA tariffs on steel and aluminum appeared restrained.

Some economists say higher USA tariffs will lead to higher costs and ultimately hurt US consumers, while restrictions on Chinese investments could take away jobs in America.

The experts called on the USA side not to make bigger mistakes, while attending the China Development Forum Economic Summit on Saturday.

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