China Imposes Tariffs on $60 Billion Worth of US Imports

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China Imposes Tariffs on $60 Billion Worth of US Imports

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

Time and again, Trump is his own worst enemy, playing with fire in dealings with Iran, Venezuela and China. 

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said his country is prepared to wage guerrilla war on the US if attacked.

Millions of Venezuelans are mobilized in citizen assemblies to defend the revolution from internal and external threats, Maduro saying they’re armed and prepared “all over the country (to defend the republic) in support of the freedom…”

The Islamic Republic vowed to use the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group in the region for target practice if the Trump regime attacks the country, saying its military will respond with “unrelenting force” to US aggression if launched.

On Monday, China responded to Trump regime tariffs on $200 billion worth of exports to the US by imposing its own duties on $60 billion worth of US imports, effective June 1 on over 5,000 products.

Duties on some US products will be hiked to 25%, others to 20 and 10%. Existing 5% tariffs on other goods will remain unchanged.

Beijing’s Finance Ministry said the move is in response to US “unilateralism and trade protectionism,” its first shoe to drop, more depending on Trump regime actions ahead, the ministry adding:

“China hopes the United States will return to the right track of bilateral trade negotiations, work together with China and meet China halfway to reach a mutually beneficial and win-win agreement on the basis of mutual respect and equality.”

Via Twitter, editor-in-chief of China’s Global Times Hu Xijin said said Beijing “may stop purchasing US agricultural products and energy, reduce Boeing orders and restrict US service trade with China. Many Chinese scholars are discussing the possibility of dumping US Treasuries and how to do it specifically.”

In a South China Morning Post op-ed, analyst David Dodwell urged Beijing to “walk away and hit back at the US, in the sectors where it really hurts” — what I call giving US hardliners a taste of their own medicine, a belly-full preferably short of war.

The US demands other countries bend to its will. Most comply by authorities in world capitals — not  in Caracas, Tehran, Damascus, Havana, Moscow, Beijing, and elsewhere not under US control.

Dodwell urged China to put trade talks “on the back burner while crafting a menu of countermeasures that would add to the price that US businesses and consumers are already paying as a result of tariffs.”

Beijing ignored Trump saying it “should not retaliate,” adding it’ll “make things worse,” turning truth on its head tweeting:

“…China will be hurt very badly if you don’t make a deal because companies will be forced to leave China for other countries. Too expensive to buy in China. You had a great deal, almost completed, & you backed out!”

Its ruling authorities want a deal that’s equitable for both countries, rejecting one-sided US demands, aiming to undermine its economic, financial, industrial, and technological development.

The next shoe to drop may be 25% US tariffs on all Chinese imports, sure to get a tough Beijing response if imposed.

Trump is a geopolitical and economic know-nothing. The burden of tariffs on imports falls largely on US consumers and businesses. Their purpose isn’t to produce revenues for the US Treasury as he falsely claimed.

According to Oxford Economics, 25% US tariffs on all Chinese goods would cost US households around $800 annually, the economy to lose about half a percent of GDP, around 360,000 fewer jobs created.

According to the US Treasury, some duties on imports go to the department, the amount a drop in the bucket. The cost mostly affects buyers.

In FY 2018, total US receipts were $3,328.7 trillion. Customs duties were $34.6 billion from all nations, according to the US Treasury. 

Trump’s claim about “massive payments” from US tariffs on Chinese imports “go(ing) directly to the Treasury of the US” is pure baloney.

His trade war with China if escalated and protracted could shove the US into recession ahead of 2020 elections, making him vulnerable to defeat by a Dem opponent.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.