Members of Congress are increasingly questioning Trump's aggressive trade policies, warning that tariffs on imports raise prices for consumers and expose US farmers and manufacturers to retaliation overseas.
But U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the 10 percent duties, which also cover many consumer products that may also contain unlisted plastics components, are needed to put more pressure on China.
"The Chinese government as always will have no choice but to take the necessary countermeasures", said China's ministry of commerce in a statement, without elaborating further. On Friday, China accused Trump of trade bullying and setting off a chain of possible adverse effects for USA consumers, as well as those overseas.
USA officials on Tuesday issued a list of thousands of Chinese imports that the Trump administration wants to target with new tariffs, including hundreds of food products, as well as tobacco, chemicals, coal, steel and aluminum.
It also includes consumer goods ranging from vehicle tires, furniture, wood products, handbags and suitcases, to dog and cat food, baseball gloves, carpets, doors, bicycles, skis, golf bags, toilet paper and beauty products.
The Trump administration said the proposed list, which would put 10 percent tariffs on thousands of different categories of Chinese imports, is needed to increase the pressure on Beijing to change what the USA calls unfair trade practices. Because China imports fewer goods from the US than the USA imports from China, it is unable to match US tariffs in value, according to a report from Mizuho Bank. "There is no justification for such action".
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The University of Louisville also said Wednesday that Schnatter resigned from its board of trustees, effective immediately. The company can not afford to alienate customers, with sales already under pressure from rivals such as Domino's.
According to the Office of the United States Trade Representative docket, "In light of China's response to the $50 billion action announced in the investigation and its refusal to change its acts, policies, and practices, it has become apparent that us action at this level is not sufficient to obtain the elimination of China's acts, policies, and practices covered in the investigation".
Li Yong, a senior fellow at the China Association of International Trade in Beijing said one retaliatory tactic China could deploy would be a bigger push to attract foreign investment, just not from the U.S.
"China has no option but to fight fire with fire".
S&P 500 and Dow futures were down 0.8 percent and 0.95 percent, respectively, pointing to a lower open for Wall Street later in the day.
"As an industry that touches 96 percent of all manufactured goods and which has much to gain from a productive, respectful trading relationship with China, ACC and our members remain hopeful that the USA and China can resolve their differences and prevent further harm to US manufacturers, farmers, and consumers". Meanwhile, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said the effects of the tariffs have been "very, very detrimental" and that he's "very, very nervous about it". However, news outlets were reporting that Chinese officials were meeting to discuss ways to punish the United States. Crude prices also sank heavily on concerns that a trade war could sap demand for the commodity that oils the wheels of the global economy - a concern echoed in OPEC's latest monthly report on Wednesday.
Some members of Trump's own Republican party are calling the trade war unwise while American businesses and economists warn it could derail the strongest global upswing in years.
In response to the most recent tariff threats, China's Commerce Ministry labeled the move "unacceptable".