Li_DanLi_Dan ・ May. 11, 2024
China Vows to Defend Itself with All Necessary Measures as New Tariffs on EVs and Other Key Sectors Loom
Reports said US will announce next Tuesday it will maintain existing tariffs on many Chinese goods under Trump, but will raise tariffs on EVs and medical supplies and add new tariffs to semiconductors and solar equipment.

TMTPost -- China vows to do whatever it takes to safeguard its interests in response to reported new U.S. tariffs on key strategic sectors including electric vehicles (EVs).

Credit:China Central Television

Credit:China Central Television

“We urge the US to follow WTO rules, lift all additional tariffs on China and not to impose new ones. China will take all necessary measures to defend its rights and interests,”  Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lin Jian responded to the reported U.S. tariffs on China would come next week at a regular press on Friday. 

Section 301 tariffs imposed by the former U.S. administration on China have severely disrupted normal trade and economic exchanges between China and the United States, and the WTO has already ruled those tariffs against WTO rules, Lin commented.

The U.S. government will double its fault as the new tariffs suggested it continues to politicize trade issues, abuse the so-called review process of Section 301 tariffs and plan tariff hikes, instead of ending wrong doings, according to Lin.

Lin also commented on a new U.S. bill that would make it easier for the Biden administration to impose export controls on artificial intelligence (AI) models, citing the risk of US tech getting into the wrong hands. Linking trade and tech issues to politics and ideologies and turning them into tools or even pushing for decoupling and severing of supply chains will only disrupt normal trade and mutual investment bilaterally and globally, and will also destabilize the industrial and supply chains, Lin said.

Lin urged the U.S. side to honor its commitments of not seeking decoupling from China and not holding back China’s development, stop pursuing protectionism, stop technological blockade and restriction against China, and stop disrupting international trade order. China will do what is necessary to firmly safeguard its lawful rights and interests, he reiterated.

Prior to Lin’s remarks, Bloomberg cited people familiar with the matter that the U.S. government is poised to unveil its decision to impose new, elevated tariffs that focus on key industries including electric vehicles, batteries and solar cells as soon as next week. The decision results from a review of Section 301 tariffs first put into place under Donald Trump in 2018 and and the Biden administration decided to hike tariffs on key sectors while largely maintaining other existing China levies, according to the people.

The tariff rate on EVs is expected to quadruple from roughly 25% to 100%, the Wall Street Journal quoted sources Friday, adding that an additional 2.5% duty would apply to all automobiles imported into the U.S. Reuters’ sources said the new tariffs, which is expected to be announced next Tuesday, will maintain existing tariffs on many Chinese goods set by former U.S. President Donald Trump, but will raise tariffs on EVs and add new tariffs to semiconductors and solar equipment. Tariffs on medical supplies like syringes and personal protective equipment will be hiked as well, the sources said.

Earlier this week, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo has indicated the government would use trade tools to protect U.S. auto industry. The U.S. could take "extreme action" and ban Chinese connected vehicles or impose restrictions on them, Raimondo said on Wednesday. The Secretary said her agency could take extreme action after reviewing public comments on a probe in February into whether Chinese vehicle imports pose national security risks. The comments were due by April 30.

At a U.S. House of Representatives hearing on Wednesday, Raimondo said she was concerned about Chinese connected vehicles that could be collecting massive amounts of data on Americans. She told lawmakers that the United States needs "to take the threat much more seriously" of Chinese connected vehicles and other tech issues.

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