Trade dispute intensifies: US to impose $16 billion import tariffs on 279 items from China from 23 August

Washington: The Trump administration announced today that it would impose 25 percent tariffs on imports of 279 items from China amounting to $16 billion. This is the second tranche of such tariffs and comes into effect on 23 August.

Washington had already imposed tariffs on $34 billion on 6 July but held off on a final $16 billion in goods as a result of concerns from US companies.

This is part of the US' response to China's "unfair trade practices" related to the forced transfer of American technology and intellectual property, the US Trade Representative (USTR) said.

After coming to power, the Trump administration has initiated steps to address the issue of massive balance of trade with China and to the alleged Chinese theft of intellectual property.

 Trade dispute intensifies: US to impose  billion import tariffs on 279 items from China from 23 August

Representational image. Reuters

In March 2018, the USTR had released the findings of its "exhaustive" Section 301 investigation that found China's acts, policies and practices related to technology transfer, intellectual property, and innovation are "unreasonable and discriminatory and burden US commerce".

The investigation had revealed that China uses joint venture requirements, foreign investment restrictions, and administrative review and licensing processes to require or pressure technology transfer from US companies and it deprives US companies of the ability to set market-based terms in licensing and other technology-related negotiations.

It also found that China directs and unfairly facilitates the systematic investment in, and acquisition of, US companies and assets to generate large-scale technology transfer.

The USTR claimed that China conducts and supports cyber intrusions into US commercial computer networks to gain unauthorized access to commercially valuable business information.

The world's two biggest economies are locked in a trade dispute.

But there seems no solution at sight as the Trump administration prepares for tariffs of up to 25 percent on an additional $200 billion in Chinese products.

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Updated Date: Aug 08, 2018 07:40:21 IST