China’s top envoy called on the U.S. to remain “cool-headed” on Thursday as Washington threatened to raise the tariff rate on the next $200 billion of Chinese imports.
“We have been very clear about the specific changes China should undertake. Regrettably, instead of changing its harmful behaviour, China has illegally retaliated against U.S. workers, farmers, ranchers and businesses,” Mr. Lighthizer said.
Officials, however, downplayed suggestions the move was intended to compensate for the recent decline in the value of the Chinese currency, which has threatened to take much of the sting out of Mr. Trump’s tariffs by making imports cheaper.
Washington and Beijing are locked in battle over American accusations that China’s export economy benefits from unfair policies and subsidies, as well as theft of American technological know-how.
Most exports targeted
Mr. Trump has threatened to slap tariffs on virtually all of China’s exports to the U.S. Officials said they remained in regular contact with their Chinese counterparts but could announce no new meeting.