US President Donald Trump on Friday upped the ante on China, threatening to slap tariffs on virtually all Chinese imports coming into the US. Trump said on Airforce One that he was ready to launch tariffs on $200 billion worth of imports in the coming days. And then he went further, saying he's also ready to hit another 267 billion worth of imports right after.
>> The $200 billion, we're talking about, could take place very soon depending on what happens with them. To a certain extent, it's going to be up to China. And I hate to say this, but behind that, there's another $267 billion ready to go on short notice, if I want
>> The move would sharply escalate a trade war with Beijing. Launched over demands from the White House for major changes in economic trade and technology policy by China. Stocks dipped after Trumps comments with the S&P 500 of 0.2%. The Chinese yuan also fell against the dollar. White House economic advisor, Larry Kudlow, told CNBC that talks between the US and China were ongoing.
But so far, China had not met the Trump administration's request. On Friday, Kudlow also told Bloomberg, the administration would consider public comments before making a final call on the $200 billion list. That list includes some consumer products like cameras, luggages and tires, and they'd be subject to tariffs of ten to 25%.
Cellphones are the biggest US import from China, and so far, they've been spared. But they'd also be hit by the threatened $267 billion list. Trump's now threatened tariffs on a total of $517 billion in Chinese imports, a figure that eclipses the total amount of goods imported from China to the US last year.