Washington is considering further trade and investment restrictions on China, sources told Bloomberg, as retaliation for alleged intellectual property theft by Chinese companies.
In the most extreme case, the U.S. could introduce duties on imports on a range of Chinese consumer goods, including clothing, footwear and electronics. These measures could be supplemented by restrictions on Chinese investment into the U.S., which have come into question lately on the grounds of national-security risks, such as with Chinese phone-maker Huawei.
Top Republican lawmakers, including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, are pushing for legislation that will require closer scrutiny of takeovers by Chinese companies, in apprehension of China’s growing influence.
According to an independent commission conducted last year on U.S. intellectual property, the annual impact of counterfeit goods and theft of trade secrets from all sources is more than $225 billion, with upper estimates at $600 billion.