Washington, March 23 (IANS) In a move seen as the next salvo in his widening war on Chinese trade abuses, US President on Thursday directed the trade representative to level tariffs on nearly $50 billion worth of Chinese imports.
According to CNN, the move comes following a seven-month investigation into the intellectual property theft, which has been a longstanding point of contention in US-China trade relations.
In addition to the tariffs, the US also plans to impose new investment restrictions, take action against China at the World Trade Organization and the Treasury Department also will propose additional measures.
“We have a tremendous intellectual property theft problem. It’s going to make us a much stronger, much richer nation,” Trump was quoted as saying.
Trump on Thursday signed a memorandum announcing the trade actions, invoking Section 301 of the 1974 Trade Act, which formed the basis for the administration’s investigation.
Before signing the measure, Trump lamented the US’ multi-hundred billion dollar trade deficit with China and said the action would be “the first of many.”
Trump, on March 8, signed proclamations to impose a 25 per cent tariff on imported steel and a 10 per cent tariff on aluminum, causing mounting dissent among business groups and trading partners around the world.