US' Mnuchin, Lighthizer to hold talks next week in China

Mnuchin said the US economy was 'still very strong'. — Reuters pic

But I don't blame China for taking advantage of us.

The Chinese trade delegation said in a statement that the talks had made "important progress", China's official Xinhua news agency reported.

They also found that 10 percent tariffs on a further $200 billion in imports that took effect in late September had less of an impact and had led to a well-documented pre-tariff surge in imports as companies sought to get ahead of the tariffs.

Trump has vowed to increase tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports to 25 percent from 10 percent now if the two sides can not reach a deal by 12:01 a.m. (0501 GMT) on March 2.

Although the trade war between China and the U.S. is causing major disruptions to global businesses, it may also allow other countries to take over $250bn of Chinese exports.

But the gains for some countries could be undermined by other aspects of the trade war, which has contributed to an economic slowdown in China and triggered volatility in global markets. But the trade war will also have a number of negative effects on global trade, especially within certain markets.

In a news conference, Coke-Hamilton quoted former U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull, who compared protective tariffs to "a gun that recoils on ourselves".

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She said the US tariff hike and a retaliatory move by China would trigger an economic downturn due to instability in commodities and financial markets, while company moves to adapt would put pressure on global growth.

The study indicates that European Union would be the victor, capturing around $70bn of new exports.

India in February a year ago slashed the customs duty on imported motorcycles like Harley-Davidson to 50 per cent after Trump called it "unfair" and threatened to increase the tariff on import of Indian bikes to the US. Unless the USA and China agree to drop their tariff dispute by March 1, duty on each country's products will rise to 25 per cent, up from the current 10 per cent level, the United Nations said.

The report indicated that the European Union stood to benefit the most, with companies in the bloc likely to capture around $50 billion of Chinese exports to the US and about $20 billion of USA exports to China. One major concern is the risk that trade tensions could spiral into currency wars, making dollar-denominated debt more hard to service.

In fact, such duties are paid by U.S. importers, with costs in many cases passed on to consumers.

But the UNCTAD study also warns that the spat could hit East Asian producers the hardest, with a projected $160 billion contraction in the region's exports unless discussions between China and the United States are resolved before the March deadline.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced legislation to limit Trump's ability to use national security as a rationale for tariffs.

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