The move comes just days after the U.S. imposed 25% tariffs for US$34 billion of goods on China, which quickly responded by imposing duties of its own. Both are planning to increase the duties to US$50 billion shortly.
The tariffs implemented by China included a large range of U.S. fruit exports, including cherries, apples and citrus.
In a statement on Tuesday, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said China had retaliated “without any international legal basis or justification.”
“As a result of China’s retaliation and failure to change its practices, the President has ordered USTR to begin the process of imposing tariffs of 10 percent on an additional $200 billion of Chinese imports,” he said.
“This is an appropriate response under the authority of Section 301 to obtain the elimination of China’s harmful industrial policies. USTR will proceed with a transparent and comprehensive public notice and comment process prior to the imposition of final tariffs, as we have for previous tariffs.”
The U.S. said it had no choice but to move forward on the new tariffs after China failed to respond to the administration’s concerns over unfair trade practices and Beijing’s abuse of U.S. intellectual property.
“For over a year, the Trump Administration has patiently urged China to stop its unfair practices, open its market, and engage in true market competition. We have been very clear and detailed regarding the specific changes China should undertake,” Lighthizer said.
“Unfortunately, China has not changed its behavior – behavior that puts the future of the U.S. economy at risk. Rather than address our legitimate concerns, China has begun to retaliate against U.S. products. There is no justification for such action.”
To view the notice, including the list of proposed tariffs on US$200 billion of Chinese imports, click here.