Tariffs Could Cost Iowa Almost $624M

ASSOCIATED PRESS           President Donald Trump spoke to reporters at the White House today in Washington

ASSOCIATED PRESS President Donald Trump spoke to reporters at the White House today in Washington

The Chinese have said they will place retaliatory tariffs on US products but have not yet specified which ones.

China will impose duties with "equal scale, equal intensity" on imports from the United States and all the consensus the two sides reached earlier will lose effect, the Commerce Ministry said in a statement on its website yesterday.

Trump is speaking Friday on the North Lawn of the White House, just as his administration just announced a 25 percent tariff on up to $50 billion worth of Chinese imports.

In a related development, the European Union had retaliated in kind against the U.S. over its imposition of tariffs last week by unanimously endorsing a plan to impose high import duties on American products.

"Any tariff or tax put in place will have a significant impact, not only to the USA soybean market but to Iowa's, because we're such a large producer", Hart told The Des Moines Register on Friday.

"These tariffs are essential to preventing further unfair transfers of American technology and intellectual property to China, which will protect American jobs", Trump said.

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Caught in the middle as the world's two largest economies battle over trade are U.S. farmers and other businesses who are being squeezed.

The U.S. exports about $14 billion worth of soybeans to China, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and Iowa is the nation's second-largest soybean grower, per the Register.

Is there a way for China to head off these tariffs?

Companies wishing to import any affected products will soon have to apply for exclusions.

Soybeans are the state's biggest export, and China is the state's biggest global soybean market.

While many business groups and lawmakers urged the two governments to negotiate instead, there was little sign talks would resume soon. "The president's actions on China are on the money", said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

"The United States can no longer tolerate losing our technology and intellectual property through unfair economic practices".

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China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang responded by stating, "The United States sending officials to Taiwan under any excuse is in serious violation of the "one China" principle".

United States officials say Beijing has sought industrial dominance in the emerging technologies through the theft of American know-how through forced technology transfers, hacking and other forms industrial espionage.

The moves to import tariffs came as the two countries held several rounds of talks following Trump's demand to slash bilateral trade deficit by USD 100 billion in a month followed by USD 200 billion to address the USD 375 billion deficit. "China is a powerful guardian and has enough ammunition to defend existing trade rules and fairness".

Trump's initial list included 818 products worth $34 billion in Chinese goods. "Given the frequent flip-flopping of the Donald Trump administration, it is still too early to conclude that a trade war will start", it said. Currently, the U.S. has a trade deficit of more than $370 billion per annum with China. Aluminum supplier Alcoa shares fell 5.2 percent.

"With the announcement of the tariffs, there's a real risk that we can see a continued increased escalation", said Robin Anderson, senior economist at Principal Global Investors in Des Moines, Iowa.

"Let's work on the trade issue but not by issuing tariffs".

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"Both US and Chinese exporters will suffer considerable economic losses while these punitive tariffs are in place, and many Asian countries that are part of the Chinese manufacturing supply chain will also suffer collateral damage in this escalating trade war". In fact, China's other trading partners like - Europe, Japan and few others, have also expressed similar concerns, but Trump has been unusually direct about challenging Beijing and threatening to disrupt such a large volume of exports.

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