Donald Trump says 'vicious' China targeting US farmers
28 July 2018
US President Donald Trump accused China of targeting American farmers in a "vicious" way and using them as leverage to get concessions on trade, even as some farmers and farm-state lawmakers, including Republicans, blamed Trump, saying they would rather trade with no tariffs than share the $12 billion aid that Trump offered.
"China is targeting our farmers, who they know I love & respect, as a way of getting me to continue allowing them to take advantage of the US. They are being vicious in what will be their failed attempt. We were being nice — until now!" Trump tweeted
The Trump administration on Tuesday unveiled the largest emergency farm aid package since 1998 that will pay up to $12 billion starting in September to compensate US farmers.
The aid package comes ahead of US mid-term elections in November.
However, Republican Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, a Trump critic, likened the farm aid package to "golden crutches" to make up for a trade war that will cost farmers far more.
China, on the other hand, accused US President Donald Trump of aggressive trade actions that would render several Chinese companies bankrupt.
“It’s hard to predict how this trade war will develop and to what extent,” Du Wanhua, deputy director of an advisory committee to the Supreme People’s Court, said. “But one thing is sure: if the US imposes tariffs on Chinese imports following an order of $60 billion, $200 billion, or even $500 billion, many Chinese companies will go bankrupt.”
A senior Chinese government official is reported to have called upon the government to take immediate measures to avert any serious injury to its export industries.
Besides China, other top US trade partners, including the EU, Canada and Mexico, are also worried of the US impost of high duties on steel and aluminium imports and have lined up retaliatory tariff measures.
US farmers are especially vulnerable since they rely on export markets for agricultural produce. China and other US trade partners slapped tariffs on incoming shipments of US soybeans, dairy, meat, produce and liquor.
China opted to retaliate by hitting where it hurts trump most – by undermining support for Trump's policies among farmers.