Chinese minister says trade war with US would be 'disaster'

Chinese minister says trade war with US would be 'disaster'

Chinese minister says trade war with US would be 'disaster'

"Because no one is willing to start a trade war, and everyone knows trade wars hurt others without helping themselves", Zhong said.

Should the situation worsen, however, Zhong said that China was more than ready.

Trade imbalance between the two countries is structural, with China exporting more commodities to the Unites States while importing more services, Zhong said, adding that trade competitiveness is determined by industries. "But we can handle any challenge, and will firmly defend the interests of our nation and our people".

Zhong also took issue with the statistics behind the trade imbalance - which showed a record $375.2 billion United States deficit with China during Trump's first year in office.

Zhong said U.S. official trade deficit figures had been over-estimated by about 20%, and in any case, would be a lot lower if the United States relaxed export restrictions on some high-tech goods. The figure for February fell slightly from the previous month to US$21 billion, according to the latest data from the customs administration. -China trade deficit by $100 billion.

The main channel of dialogue on trade between the two nations, the Comprehensive Economic Dialogue, has been put on hold over United States frustration over a lack of progress.

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Zhong said that Beijing would continue to "relax market access" to China, and that it would also attach greater importance to intellectual property rights, another point of tension with the U.S.

The tariffs are considered to be targeted at China due to the country's production of global surpluses of steel.

He gave no details on how this figure was reached, but the US and Chinese governments generally report widely differing trade figures because Beijing counts only the first port to which goods go instead of their final destination. "Big Deficit. If not, we Tax Cars etc. FAIR!" "The outcome will only be harmful", Foreign Minister Wang Yi said. "As a close security and trade partner of the United States, the European Union must be excluded from the announced measures", she said.

The US has opened the way for more exemptions from tariffs of 25% on steel imports and 10% on aluminum that President Donald Trump set last week.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull heralded his nation's exemption last Saturday morning following a phone call with Trump, which he described as "a very good and productive discussion".

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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