Compiled by Kevin Schulz
The trade war with China is escalating. P. Scott Shearer, vice president of Bockorny Group Inc. and “Legislative Watch” columnist on NationalHogFarmer.com, reports that China announced today it plans to retaliate on Sept. 1 with tariffs of its own in response to President Donald Trump’s plan to place a tariff on an additional $107 billion of Chinese goods on Sept. 1 and $156 billion on goods on Dec. 15.
Shearer reports that China will place tariffs ranging from 5% to 10% on $75 billion of U.S. goods effective Sept. 1 and Dec. 15. A 25% tariff will be imposed on U.S. cars and a 5% tariff on auto parts and components effective on Dec. 15.
Indications are beef and pork tariffs will increase by 10% beginning Sept. 1. Also on the list for increased tariffs are soybeans, grains, peanuts, oranges, pears, apricots and walnuts.
Jim Monroe, National Pork Producers Council assistant vice president of Communications, issued this statement after China’s announcement. “Any escalation in the trade dispute with China is a major concern to U.S. pork producers. China, the largest pork-consuming nation in the world, is seeking reliable sources of pork as it deals with African swine fever. There is no more reliable source than the United States. U.S. pork producers are eager to compete on a level playing field in China and to more fully participate in this unprecedented opportunity. Unfortunately, the current trade dispute prevents us from doing so.”
Fighting fire with fire, the BBC reports that President Trump suggests U.S. companies look outside of China for production. “Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies home and making your products in the USA,” the BBC reports that Trump tweeted. “I will be responding to China’s tariffs this afternoon.”
The Washington Post reports that the U.S. business community is criticizing the president’s suggestion of severing business ties with the Chinese, warning “that halting sales with such a large trading partner would hurt American companies and the broader economy. … ‘Trump may be frustrated with China, but the answer isn’t for U.S. companies to ignore a market with 1.4 billion consumers,’ says Myron Brilliant, executive vice president at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. ‘Escalating tensions is not good for market stability, investor confidence or American jobs.’”