Published: Mon, March 05, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

China Threatens Retaliation Against Trump Trade War

China Threatens Retaliation Against Trump Trade War

Attendants serving tea before the opening of the First Session of the 13th Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference National Committee at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, today.

Zhang's comments follow a high-profile visit to the USA last week by Liu He, the top economic advisor to present Xi Jinping, apparently aimed at defusing tensions surrounding bilateral trade disputes.

China has warned that although it does not seek a trade war with the US, it would take "necessary measures" to protect its economic interests. He gave no details on timing for the talks or who might be included.

That means Xi, already China's most powerful leader in decades, could extend his rule over China for life.

"If policies are made on the basis of mistaken judgments or assumptions, it will damage bilateral relations and bring about consequences that neither country wants to see", he said.

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More than a foot of snow was dumped in some parts of the country - peaking with 34cm of snow in Wittering, Cambridgeshire. Over 250 schools across the province have been closed and a number of flights have been cancelled.

According to agency reports, Trump's announcement on Thursday sparked a flurry of counter-threats from other nations but its main trade rival, China, had avoided any overt warnings of potential retaliation until now.

Last year military spending was budgeted to increase by just 7 percent, to 1.044 trillion yuan ($164.60 billion) about one-quarter of the proposed US defence spending for the year. China has sharply criticized the USA move on tariffs, saying it would hurt the global economy.

Zhang said that the total trade between the two economic powers reached more than $580 billion in 2017 so "it is natural that there are some frictions".

The exchanges would follow a trip by Xi's top economic adviser, Liu He, last week to Washington, where he met with U.S. business leaders, as well as White House economic adviser Gary Cohn, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. But his three years there was not easy - it was a time when Beijing and Washington were seeking to deepen economic cooperation in the wake of the global financial crisis amid tensions, especially when then United States president Barack Obama revealed his pivot to Asia, a strategy seen as a bid to curtail China's growing influence in the region. He said China will create a transparent, stable and predictable environment while widening market entry for foreign investors. Xi's government has already launched a probe into USA imports of sorghum, and is studying whether to restrict shipments of US soybeans - targets that could hurt Trump's support in some politically important farming states.

Zhang emphasized that trade disputes should be resolved through dialogue.

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