Earlier, US President Donald Trump again accused China of manipulating its currency to boost exports, and warned that the US would immediately impose tariffs on another $300 billion’ worth of Chinese goods if Chinese President Xi Jinping did not meet him at the upcoming G20 meeting in Osaka, Japan later this month to hammer out a trade deal.
China is not afraid of escalating the trade conflict with the US, Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang has indicated.
“China does not want to fight a trade war, but we are not afraid of fighting a trade war,” he said in a press briefing Tuesday.
“If the United States only wants to escalate trade frictions, we will resolutely respond and fight to the end,” Geng added.
According to the spokesman, Chinese officials remain open to engaging the US in trade talks, if they are based on equality.
Geng declined to confirm whether or not President Xi would meet Trump at the G20, promising that the foreign ministry would “release information on this when we have it.”
On Monday, President Trump accused China of seeking to gain a competitive advantage against US producers by devaluing their currency, the yuan, and threatened to slap Beijing with immediate tariffs on $300 billion’ worth of Chinese goods if Xi didn’t meet him in Osaka on June 28 or 29 during the G20 summit.
Washington slapped 25 percent tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods in May, and announced plans to introduce duties on another $300 billion of imports – comprising virtually the entirety of the remaining non-taxed Chinese imports into the US. Beijing’s retaliatory tariff hike on $60 billion’ worth of US goods stepped into force on June 1.
Along with the tariffs conflict, US has also hit out against China’s technology sector, blacklisting Chinese telecom giant Huawei. Beijing, meanwhile, has reportedly warned US tech giants and other companies operating in the People’s Republic not to adhere to President Trump’s ban on sales of US technologies to Chinese companies. In addition to the US ban, Washington has been lobbying its European allies against granting Huawei access to its digital networks, claiming that the Chinese government wields significant control over the company, and accusing the Chinese tech firm of installing “backdoor” access tools into its devices to help Beijing spy on users. Huawei has vigorously denied Washington’s claims.