The United States has almost completed a second list of tariffs on $100 billion (75.44 billion pounds) in Chinese goods, as President Donald Trump prepares to enact an initial round of duties that is expected to trigger an in-kind response from Beijing, several sources said. "Bloomberg Economics' immediate assessment is that this would be a drag for both countries, but - absent an outsize impact on confidence - one that would be hard to discern in the aggregate growth or inflation numbers". "It is also about values, governance and geopolitical disagreements", she said. Shortly after Chinese authorities warned of retaliation, the White House threatened tariffs on a further $100 billion of Chinese exports.
Trump has already slapped tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, Mexico and the European Union, all of which have threatened to retaliate in kind.
"If the USA side adopts unilateral protectionist measures and damages China's interests, we will immediately react and take necessary measures to firmly safeguard our legitimate rights and interests", said foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang during a regular news briefing.
The president is due to announce the tariffs after the original batch - on about 1,300 Chinese products - was put on hold for trade talks.
The trade tensions - simmering ever since Trump became president - appear set to escalate at an inopportune time for China's economy.
"To make matters worse, President Trump rolled back sanctions on Chinese telecommunications firm ZTE after the company sold critical technology to Iran and North Korea, and lied to United States security officials about it. President Trump should be focused on American jobs, not China's", the lawmaker said.
China, the world's No. 2 behind the USA, has pledged to retaliate on US exports including soybeans and pork. The US trade deficit with China was $336 billion in 2017.
Wall Street has viewed the escalating trade tensions with wariness, fearful that they could strangle the economic growth achieved during Trump's watch and undermine the benefits of the tax cuts he signed into law past year. "China chooses the first", Wang said.
'Those are all historic ingredients for an economic slowdown'.
The trade spat could boost prices for raw materials and food, leading to higher rates of inflation and a potential recession, according to Gary Cohn, Trump's former top economic adviser. "His fundamental commitment to the "deplorables" on the campaign trail was that he was going to bring manufacturing jobs back, particularly from Asia".
'That's what has gotten us to the situation today where the Chinese are actually at the table, ' Bannon said.
Spain's newly appointed agricultural minister, Luis Planas, also opposed the tariff's impact, saying it is unjust.
He trimmed the list to 800 product categories, Reuters news agency reported, citing industry sources familiar with the list.
The trade representative office has held public hearings on the list of 1,300 categories of products to see whether duties on any of the goods would unduly harm US consumers and businesses.
The approval followed a White House meeting with senior White House officials and senior representatives of the Treasury and Commerce departments, U.S. Trade Representative's Office and national security officials.
Administration officials have been targeting products where China provides less than a third of total USA imports to minimize the effect on consumers. "As we have said repeatedly, tariffs are taxes on American consumers and will put good-paying USA manufacturing jobs at risk", said Dennis Slater, president, Association of Equipment Manufacturers.
Beijing has made clear that it intends to impose its own tariffs on a corresponding amount of USA goods.