China on Friday accused the United States of starting “the biggest trade war in economic history” as the two sides imposed steep new tariffs on tens of billions of dollars of each other’s exports.
The Trump administration’s 25% tariffs affect more than 800 Chinese products worth $34 billion such as industrial machinery, medical devices and auto parts. They kicked in just after midnight ET, which is noon in Beijing.
China’s tariffs on US goods came into effect immediately afterward, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said Friday. “China is forced to strike back to safeguard core national interests and the interests of its people,” the Commerce Ministry said in a statement on Friday. It accused the United States of “typical trade bullying.”