US announces 25% new tariffs on Chinese tech goods
30 May 2018
Days after US and China reached an agreement on how to avoid a trade war and instead engage in trade enhancing measures, the White House on Tuesday announced that it will impose a hefty 25 per cent tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods containing "industrially significant" technology.
Earlier, in the height of a trade row, the Trump administration had demanded China to reduce its $375 billion trade surplus against the by $100 billion while China retaliated with similar measures imports from the US.
China and the US announced measures to avert a trade war on 20 May under which Beijing agreed to "significantly increase" its purchases of American goods and services to reduce China’s $375 billion trade surplus with the United States.
The two sides had also issued a joint statement vowing not to launch a trade war against each other.
"The United States will impose a 25 per cent tariff on $50 billion of goods imported from China containing industrially significant technology, including those related to the 'Made in China 2025' programme," the White House said in a statement.
The final list of imports covered by the new duty will be announced by 15 June, and tariffs will be imposed on those imports shortly thereafter, it said.
The new tariff is part of one of three major steps that the US is taking based on the 22 March memorandum signed by President Donald Trump.
The import duty is part of multiple steps the US would take to protect domestic technology and intellectual property from certain discriminatory and burdensome trade practices by China, the White House said.
The trade-related actions were announced following a report by the Office of the US Trade Representative regarding China's practices with respect to technology transfer, intellectual property and innovation.
The USTR has since updated Trump about the progress achieved since the March 22 memorandum.
In order to protect its national security, the US administration will also implement specific investment restrictions and enhanced export controls for Chinese persons and entities related to the acquisition of industrially significant technology.
The proposed investment restrictions and enhanced export controls will be announced by 30 June and they will be implemented shortly thereafter, it said.
The US will also continue to pursue litigation at the World Trade Organisation for violations of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights based on China's discriminatory practices for licensing intellectual property, the statement said.
The US filed the case regarding these violations on March 23.
Besides, the White House said it would continue with efforts to protect domestic technology and intellectual property, stop non-economic transfers of industrially significant technology and intellectual property to China, and enhance access to the Chinese market.
US has already requested China to remove all of its several trade barriers, including non-monetary trade barriers, which make it both difficult and unfair to do business there, it said.
The US will request that tariffs and taxes between the two countries be reciprocal in nature and value.
"Discussions with China will continue on these topics and the US looks forward to resolving long-standing structural issues and expanding our exports by eliminating China's severe import restrictions," the statement said.