Trump to unveil revised tariff list targeting $50-billion in Chinese goods
China urged the United States on Thursday to make a “wise choice” on trade, saying it was ready to respond in case Washington chose confrontation, as U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to decide whether to impose tariffs on Chinese goods.
Mr. Trump is due to unveil revisions to his initial tariff list targeting US$50-billion of Chinese goods on Friday. People familiar with the revisions said the list would be slightly smaller than the original, with some goods removed and others added, particularly in the technology sector.
Another administration official said a draft document showed the new list would still be close to US$50-billion, with about 1,300 product categories, but both the dollar amount and quantity of products were still subject to change.
Speaking to reporters in Beijing, with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at his side, the Chinese government’s top diplomat, State Councillor Wang Yi, said there were two choices when it came to the trade issue.
“The first choice is co-operation and mutual benefit. The other choice is confrontation and mutual loss. China chooses the first,” Mr. Wang said. “We hope the U.S. side can also make the same wise choice. Of course, we have also made preparations to respond to the second kind of choice.”
It remains unclear when Mr. Trump would activate the tariffs, if he decides to do so. Several industry lobbyists told Reuters they expected the move to come as early as Friday, with publication of a Federal Register notice, or it could be put off until next week.
Under the 1974 trade law that Mr. Trump invoked to pursue a tariff investigation into China’s intellectual-property practices, he could delay the activation by 30 days. He can also delay the tariffs by 180 days if the U.S. trade representative’s office finds negotiations with China are yielding progress.