China warns Trump over potential steel and aluminum tariffs

China is warning President Trump that it will take action if he puts heavy tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum.

Date: February 17, 2018
By: Jethro Mullen

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Friday recommended that Trump impose measures against foreign suppliers of the metals in the name of national security, the latest sign of a tougher stance on trade by the administration.

Trump has until mid-April to decide what to do.

“If the United States’ final decision affects China’s interests, we will take necessary measures to defend our rights,” said Wang Hejun, a senior official at China’s Commerce Ministry, according to a report Saturday by state-run news agency Xinhua.

The short article didn’t provide further details on how Beijing might respond. Ross’ recommendations came in the middle of China’s Lunar New Year holiday when government offices and businesses largely shut down for a week.

Experts have warned that trade tensions are likely to rise this year between the U.S. and China, the world’s two largest economies, as Trump decides how to act on a series of investigations his administration launched last year.    [FULL  STORY]