Trump administration adds to China trade pressure with higher tariff plan

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US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said: "The increase in the possible rate of the additional duty is meant to provide the administration with additional options to encourage China to change its harmful policies and behaviour and adopt policies that will lead to fairer markets and prosperity for all of our citizens".

A further escalation of the dispute would be a threat to world trade as a whole.

China Thursday said it is fully prepared to deal with US' threats to escalate the spiralling trade war between the two countries and will fight back to defend its dignity and the interests of its people, Reuters quoted the commerce ministry as saying.

The next wave of US tariffs is set to kick in as soon as Wednesday, with the possible imposition of duties on another $16 billion of Chinese imports.

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Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang reiterated at a regular news briefing in Beijing that the United States' efforts at "blackmail" would fail.

"We hope that those directly involved in the United States' trade policies can calm down, carefully listen to the voices of USA consumers.and hear the collective call of the worldwide community", Wang, a member of the country's state council, or cabinet, said in Singapore.

President Donald Trump is weighing the idea of increasing from 10 percent to 25 percent the tariffs imposed on some $200 billion of Chinese products, mainly consumer goods, the Office of the US Trade Representative reported Wednesday.

Raising the proposed tax rate on those goods means extending the deadline for public comment on the plan from August 30 to September 5. The two sides have not held high-level talks for a couple months now. "Regrettably, instead of changing its harmful behavior, China has illegally retaliated against us workers, farmers, ranchers and businesses", Lighthizer said.

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The Chinese have already proposed buying more US goods in order to settle the dispute, only to have the White House-which wants to win a broader argument about intellectual property and subsidies-reject the proposal. Officials in Beijing have vowed to respond with the same amount of tariffs on USA products. The night before the agreement, he proposed in a tweet that "Both the USA and the European Union drop all Tariffs, Barriers and".

Since July 1, the States have introduced duties for goods worth $34 bln and China responded in a tit-for-tat manner.

"US pressure and blackmail won't have an effect". "Now, the U.S. coerces and pressures others unilaterally".

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