China says trade war with USA will hurt global economy

China says trade war with USA will hurt global economy

Chinese Commerce Minister Zhong Shan has suggested that Beijing may retaliate if Washington goes ahead with a plan to impose high tariffs on imported steel and other products.

China does not want to enter in a war with the US, as it would have devastating consequences for world's economy.

But China will not start a trade war and it will continue talks with the USA, he said at a press briefing on the sidelines of the ongoing annual parliamentary session. China is not one of those nations.

Beijing and Washington have agreed to hold talks in Beijing in the near future to discuss economic and trade matters.

Trade tensions between China and the USA have risen since Mr Trump took office. But Zhong said communications have not been completely broken off.

This comes after U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday signed a proclamation that sets the tariff on imports of steel at 25% and on aluminum at 10%, to be effected in 15 days.

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The Trump administration earlier approved higher tariffs on Chinese-made washing machines, solar modules and some other goods, prompting Beijing to accuse Washington of disrupting global trade regulation by taking action under USA law instead of through the World Trade Organization.

The further trade imbalance between the two countries is structural, with China exporting more commodities to the United States while importing more services, Zhong said, adding that trade competitiveness is determined by industries. The figure for February fell slightly from the previous month to US$21 billion, according to the latest data from the customs administration.

"There is no victor in a trade war", Zhong said at a news conference in Beijing last Sunday.

The country will also work to promote the liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment along the Belt and Road, while carrying out major foreign aid projects including the Happy Home Projects, the Anti-Poverty Projects and the Health Recovery Projects, Zhong said.

Beijing has indicated it will implement retaliatory measures, such as by imposing tariffs on agricultural products imported from the United States.

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