China minister says trade war with USA would be 'disastrous'

China minister says trade war with USA would be 'disastrous'

China minister says trade war with USA would be 'disastrous'

The Trump administration earlier approved higher tariffs on Chinese-made washing machines, solar modules and some other goods, prompting Beijing to accuse Washington of disrupting global trade regulation by taking action under USA law instead of through the World Trade Organization.

A trade war between China and the United States would be disastrous not only for the two countries involved, but also the rest of the world, Beijing warned on Sunday.

"There will be no winners in the trade war, it will cause disaster for China, USA and the whole world", the Minister said.

But the target of Trump's ire is China, whose capacity expansions have helped add to global surpluses of steel.

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"There is no victor in a trade war", Zhong said at a press conference in Beijing Sunday.

Trade tensions between the world's two largest economies are widely expected to intensify this year as Washington's trade policy with Beijing is influenced by hardliners such as White House trade adviser Peter Navarro and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. "But we can handle any challenges and are determined to protect the interests of our country and its people".

Trump's announcement on tariffs underlined concerns about rising United States protectionism, which has sparked bouts of turmoil in global financial markets over the past year as investors feared a damaging trade spat will shatter a synchronised uptick in world growth.

"There is still much for us to do, one side can not call the shots, we need to work hard together", Zhong said. But China's commerce minister Zhong said the Trump administration was overstating the US trade deficit with China by about 20 percent annually.

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Nonetheless, there is growing bipartisan consensus in Washington, and support within some segments of the United States business community, for the USA government to counter what are seen as Beijing's predatory industrial policies and market restrictions on foreign firms.

China does not want to enter in a war with the U.S., as it would have devastating consequences for world's economy.

The United States and China are scheduled to hold trade talks in Beijing in the near future.

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