Disregarding calls from those on both sides of the aisle – including within his own cabinet – Trump has moved ahead with his misguided decision to increase taxes on imported steel and aluminum, in effect inviting a trade war.
In response to Trump’s announcement that America would hereafter impose a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports, the Chinese Ministry of Finance has announced that it will, in turn, impose a 15 percent tariff on 120 products, including fruits and other related goods, as well as a 25 percent tariff on eight other products, including pork and other related goods.
The reciprocal tariffs are set to go into effect on Monday.
Trump’s move went into effect on March 23rd, in violation of World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. China’s ministry explained that “to suspend tariff concession on U.S. imports is a just move to safeguard China’s interests using WTO rules.”
The move by China flies in the face of Trump’s prior assurances that trade wars are “good and easy to win.”
As America braces for what is certain to be a tumultuous stock market open, as well as a potentially ruinous blow to American importers and advocates of free trade, we have our president and his promises of “so much winning” to thank.