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China vows to retaliate if U.S. imposes new tariffs

By
Nicholas Sakelaris
Shoppers browse products on July 15 at a Walmart in Beijing, China. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
Shoppers browse products on July 15 at a Walmart in Beijing, China. Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 2 (UPI) -- The Chinese government said Friday it will retaliate if U.S. President Donald Trump follows through with new tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese exports -- just when it appeared both sides had made small but key steps in the long-running trade conflict.

The Chinese foreign ministry said Beijing will take "necessary countermeasures" to defend its interests if the Trump administration imposes more tariffs.

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"We don't want to fight, but we are not afraid to fight," Hua Chunying said Friday. "China will not accept any extreme pressure, intimidation and blackmail."

The remarks follow a promise by Trump Thursday for an additional 10 percent tax on remaining Chinese products imported to the United States -- because, he said, China has not lived up to its trade responsibilities. The additional tariff is set to take effect Sept. 1.

RELATED Trump: U.S. to levy new 10% tariff on $300B of Chinese goods

"We look forward to continuing our positive dialogue with China on a comprehensive Trade Deal, and feel that the future between our two countries will be a very bright one," Trump tweeted.

The tariff will affect products like Apple iPhones, other electronics, toys and shoes. With the new tariff, all Chinese imports into the United States will be subject to some kind of duty.

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The new spat follows positive trade negotiations this week between U.S. and Chinese leaders in Shanghai. China agreed to buy more U.S. agricultural products, and called the discussions "frank, efficient and constructive." The United States agreed to provide "favorable" conditions for imports, and both sides had agreed to meet again in September.

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