Leaders in Washington and Beijing started the week with a back-and-forth of new threats and conditions related to the Trump administration’s latest plans for fresh tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods, which could be signed in first thing Monday.
The Wall Street Journal reports that officials in China have said they will pull out from any arrangements for a revival of trade negotiations if the President goes ahead with his plans. Last week US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin invited China’s chief economic adviser Liu He to reopen talks with a visit to Washington.
“China is not going to negotiate with a gun pointed to its head,” a senior Chinese official told the Journal.
The two sides have not held high-level talks since June, when a round of meetings in the US capital ended with only a few tacit agreements reached. Since then, the US and China have imposed tit-for-tat levies on $50 billion of each other’s exports, with Trump threatening to raise this figure to cover the entire list of Chinese exports if tensions continue.