President Trump said Thursday that he will consider hitting China with an additional $100 billion in tariffs, on top of the $50 billion the White House has already authorized, escalating threats of a trade war with the Chinese that his top advisers had tried to minimize a day earlier.
In a statement late Thursday, Mr. Trump said that he was responding to China’s “unfair retaliation” against the United States, which this week outlined hundreds of Chinese products, like flat-screen TVs and medical devices, that could be subject to American tariffs. The Chinese, in response, detailed their own list of $50 billion worth of American products, like soybeans and pork, that would be hit with levies.
“Rather than remedy its misconduct, China has chosen to harm our farmers and manufacturers,” Mr. Trump said, adding that he has instructed the United States trade representative to determine if another $100 billion in tariffs were warranted and, “if so, to identify the products upon which to impose such tariffs.”
Mr. Trump’s threat of additional tariffs is a marked escalation of a trade dispute that could have global economic ramifications and derail the economic expansion underway.