Trump issues $267bn tariff threat to China ahead of trade talks

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Although President Donald Trump promised Apple products will not be hit with tariffs, he suggested otherwise ahead of his summit with the Chinese leader Xi Jinping, scheduled for later this week.

Trump said this week that he is "highly unlikely" to step back on a planned increase in tariffs on $US200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25%.

The Trump administration has already placed tariffs on $200 billion in goods manufactured in China in what it said was a bid to achieve trade parity between the two nations and discourage Chinese theft of USA intellectual property.

"The only deal would be China has to open up their country to competition from the United States", he told the WSJ. He also said that "Apple could ultimately mitigate any tariff impacts" if Trump goes ahead with the plan. "I mean, I can make it 10 percent, and people could stand that very easily", he said.

"People want to believe that something good is going to come from the G20" meeting, said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist at SlateStone Wealth LLC in NY. The move is part of measures to reduce trade deficit with China and alleged theft of American intellectual property and forced transfer of technology, according to the office of the US Trade Representative.

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A tentative rebound in global share markets will be tested in Asia on Tuesday after U.S. President Donald Trump quashed hopes he might strike a truce on trade with China, dampening risk appetite across the region.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Trump said he expects to move ahead with raising tariffs on US$200 billion (RM838.4 billion) in Chinese imports to 25 per cent from 10 per cent now. In 2017, the US bought more than $522 billion worth of goods from China.

In an interview with the Washington Post, Trump said he was awaiting a "full report" from his national security team Tuesday evening about Russia's capture of three Ukrainian naval ships and their crews on Sunday.

Kudlow added that if the USA doesn't get "satisfactory" responses to its trade positions more tariffs will be imposed. US light crude was up 33 cents at $51.96.

"If we don't make a deal, then I'm going to put the $US267 billion additional on", at a tariff rate of either 10 per cent or 25 per cent, he said. However, in recent months, he has modified that view, saying in an interview this year that "it's not true that the iPhone is not made in the United States".

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