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China is “seriously making” preparations for relations with the U.S. to deteriorate, according to Global Times’ editor-in-chief Hu Xijin.
Hu was responding to what seemed like a rare expression of regret by Trump on Sunday. When asked if he was rethinking his decision to escalate the trade war, Trump acknowledged having second thoughts. Hours later, the White House said his comments had been misinterpreted and that the president regretted not raising tariffs more.
The Global Times is a Chinese tabloid run by the People’s Daily, which is the flagship newspaper of the Communist Party. Hu has said the paper voices opinions that official sources can’t.
On Friday, Trump announced additional levies on Chinese imports and called for American companies to pull out of Asia’s largest economy after China said it would impose retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.
The U.S. is “starting to lose China,” Hu said Saturday on Twitter.
China “has ‘lost’ the U.S. already,” Hu said, citing high tariffs, the ban on telecommunications company Huawei Technologies Co., political hostility, and actions toward Hong Kong and Taiwan.
China on Friday said it would impose levies on another $75 billion of U.S. goods, including soybeans, automobiles and oil.
That prompted Trump’s response. The president said existing U.S. duties on $250 billion of Chinese imports will rise to 30% from 25% on Oct. 1, while a planned 10% tariff on a further $300 billion in Chinese goods will jump to 15%, starting with the first tranche on Sept. 1.
China’s Ministry of Commerce issued a strongly-worded statement on Saturday saying the U.S. was involved in “unilateral and bullying trade protectionism” that puts the normal international trade order at risk.
“China urges the U.S. to stop their wrongdoing right away or all the consequences will be borne by the U.S.,” the commerce ministry said. Editorials in state-run papers this weekend called the U.S. actions “provocative,” and stated China would fight the trade war to the end.
--With assistance from Evelyn Yu.
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