BEIJING/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - China warned on Friday it was fully prepared to respond with a “fierce counter strike” of fresh trade measures if the United States follows through on President Donald Trump’s threat to slap tariffs on an additional $100 billion in Chinese goods.
In light of China’s “unfair retaliation” against earlier U.S. trade actions, Trump upped the ante on Thursday by ordering U.S. officials to identify extra tariffs, escalating a high stakes tit-for-tat confrontation with potentially damaging consequences for the world’s two biggest economies.
China’s Commerce Ministry spokesman, Gao Feng, called the U.S. action “extremely mistaken” and unjustified, adding that the spat was a struggle between unilateralism and multilateralism. He also said no negotiations were likely in the current circumstances.
“The result of this behavior is to smash your own foot with a stone,” Gao told a news briefing in Beijing. “If the United States announces an additional $100 billion list of tariffs, China has already fully prepared, and will not hesitate to immediately make, a fierce counter strike”.
Gao was speaking shortly after Trump defended his proposed tariffs on U.S. radio, saying the move might cause “a little pain” but the United States will be better off in the long run.
“I’m not saying there won’t be a little pain, but the market has gone up 40 percent, 42 percent so we might lose a little bit of it,” Trump said in an interview with New York station 77 WABC’s “Bernie & Sid” show on Friday.
“So we may take a hit and you know what, ultimately we’re going to be much stronger for it.”
On Wednesday, China unveiled a list of 106 U.S. goods - from soybeans and whiskey to frozen beef and aircraft - targeted for tariffs, in a