Canada not helping itself by hitting US with tariffs-White House

US President Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump

"The US has provoked this trade war, we do not want to fight it, but in order to safeguard the interests of the country and the people, we have no choice but to fight", said China commerce ministry spokesman Gao Feng.

"All we can do is adjust our supply chain here depending on the size of the price increases". A Chinese government spokesman has said Thursday, July 5, 2018, that Beijing "will not bow in the face of threats and blackmail" on the eve of US tariff hikes and will defend its interests.

The top commerce minister reiterated the stance that China "will not bow down in the face of threats and blackmail and will not falter from its determination to defend free trade and the multilateral system".

A much larger group of US companies and traders selling American goods in China is bracing for a similar blow as the world's second-largest economy prepares to impose tariffs on another $34 billion of American imports on Friday.

European shares headed for a third day of gains on Thursday as reassuring economic data from Germany and a report that its big carmakers could be spared from USA tariffs offset another gloomy session for Asia.

Both countries threatened to levy tariffs this week, however, China said it would not be the first to impose the measures.

Despite the escalating rhetoric and explosive tweets, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat, attacked Presdient Trump last week for not being tougher on China. China's currency suffered its worst quarter since 1994 in the three months through June, raising questions over whether the government was deliberately letting it slide as a tactic in the trade war.

"The $34 billion USA tariffs figure has been mostly factored by the markets and focus is now on what the United States says on the remaining $16 billion (of a promised $50 billion tariff plan)", said Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management in Tokyo.

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Investors watching the trade tit-for-tat between the United States and China may well have reason to fear the havoc a full blown conflict between the world's two biggest economies could wreak on the global economy.

In a country where regulation enforcement can vary widely by region, it's hard for analysts to know whether these sudden administrative headaches are a coincidence or the Chinese government following through on threats to make life harder for Americans in business. The overall value mirrors USA tariffs, which also are set to kick in on Friday.

The spokesman added that the "US is shooting itself in the foot and hurting the world" with its tariff hikes.

Chinese stocks have taken a beating in recent weeks, entering a bear market, as concerns about the trade-war have mingled with worries about how an ongoing debt-control campaign will feed through into the outlook for economic growth.

According to translated quotes published by Travel and Leisure magazine, the advisory warned that "shooting, robbery, and theft are frequent" in the United States.

Both Chinese and United States business sources in China said there appeared to be little hope that the tariffs could be averted.

How much consumers are willing change their behaviour because of the tariffs will shape which businesses suffer most. That is noon on Thursday in Washington and 5pm United Kingdom time.

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