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China Vows to Retaliate after U.S. Levies New Tariffs

President Donald Trump during a joint meeting with China’s President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, November 9, 2017. (Damir Sagolj/Reuters)

Tensions with China ramped up Tuesday as Beijing vowed to hit back at a new wave of tariffs imposed by the Trump administration.

The White House announced late Monday that it will implement $200 billion more in tariffs on Chinese products, and another $267 billion on top of that if China strikes back. China’s Ministry of Commerce warned hours later of unspecified “synchronized countermeasures.”

The U.S. tariffs on thousands of Chinese goods will take effect September 24, the White House said Monday, starting at 10 percent and escalating to 25 percent by the end of the year.

“China has had many opportunities to fully address our concerns,” Trump said in the White House statement. “Once again, I urge China’s leaders to take swift action to end their country’s unfair trade practices.”

Earlier this year, the Trump administration levied $50 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods, which led China to respond with equivalent tariffs on U.S. exports.

American businesses have warned that they are already hurting from the Trump administration’s trade war with China and other trading partners in Europe and Mexico. A newly formed coalition that includes Farmers for Free Trade and an eclectic group called Americans for Free Trade representing thousands of companies are conducting a multi-million-dollar campaign asking the government to tamp down the tariffs.

The U.S. move “doesn’t show sincerity or goodwill,” China’s government said on Tuesday.

“The Chinese side has repeatedly emphasized that the only correct way to solve the trade dispute between China and the United States is through talk and consultation on the basis of equity, integrity and mutual respect,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang.

“We stand ready to negotiate with China anytime, if they are willing to engage in serious talks,” said senior White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow.

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