US President Donald Trump defended Saturday his hardline trade policy against China, arguing that the tariffs he imposed are bringing in “billions” from the Beijing government.
“Things are going along very well with China. They are paying us Tens of Billions of Dollars, made possible by their monetary devaluations and pumping in massive amounts of cash to keep their system going,” Trump wrote on Twitter.
Trump often argues that tariffs imposed on Chinese goods are paid by China when in fact they are covered by middlemen for US importers and in most cases end up being paid by US consumers who buy those goods.
Trump also said that other countries, fearful of being punished with US levies like China is, are clamoring to reach trade deals with the United States.
“Countries are coming to us wanting to negotiate REAL trade deals, not the one sided horror show deals made by past administrations. They don’t want to be targeted for Tariffs by the US,” Trump tweeted without saying which countries want such accords.
On Thursday Trump announced plans to impose tariffs on another $300 billion in Chinese goods in September. The threat jolted global stock markets.
Trump’s announcement came a day after US and Chinese trade negotiators revived talks aimed at ending the year-long dispute.
The new plan means virtually all of the $660 billion in annual two-way trade between the world’s two biggest economies will have tariffs on it.
China on Friday threatened to retaliate. It has already imposed tariffs on $110 billion in American goods, almost all of the products it imports from the US.
“Slapping on tariffs is definitely not a constructive way to resolve economic and trade frictions, it’s not the correct way,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Friday.
After resuming face-to-face talks in Shanghai this week, trade negotiators are set to reconvene in Washington in early September for another round of discussions, which means they will take place just after the new tariffs take effect.