Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Bully' Trump Is Starting Biggest Trade War in History, China Warns

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Bully' Trump Is Starting Biggest Trade War in History, China Warns

Article excerpt

Byline: Nicholas Cecil Deputy Political Editor

CHINA has accused Donald Trump of starting the "largest trade war in economic history" just days before he flies to Britain for an official visit.

The US president slapped tariffs worth $34 billion (PS25.7 billion) on Chinese goods early today -- and threatened to up the stakes with extra levies on more than $500 billion (PS378 billion) of products if China reacts aggressively. Beijing branded Mr Trump a "trade bully" and immediately hit back with tit-for-tat tariffs on US imports.

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The dispute fuelled doubts over whether Britain would be able to strike a good post-Brexit trade deal with the US if Washington is taking such protectionist measures.

It also unleashed fresh tensions before Mr Trump's trip to Britain late next week. Large-scale protests are expected against the president and his policies, especially those on immigration.

However, Mr Trump is expected to be flown by helicopter between Chequers and Windsor Castle, and on board Air Force One to Scotland, as White House chiefs seek to avoid the president being confronted by demonstrators.

The US president will attend a two-day Nato summit in Brussels, starting on Wednesday. He is set to take a tough line with European nations, demanding that they significantly increase military spending to support the alliance.

After tearing up America's stance on free trade -- with tariffs imposed on Britain and other EU countries -- and criticising military allies, Mr Trump is due to fly to Finland for a summit with Vladimir Putin on July 16, while the probe into Russian links to his presi-dential campaign continues. …

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