China Suspends Purchases of US Agricultural Products

(TELESUR) – China’s Commerce Ministry announced Tuesday that the Asian country will suspend the purchase of U.S. agricultural goods in response to the recent announcement that the President Donald Trump administration will increase tariffs to Chinese exports.

“It has been agreed that the State Council’s Customs Tariff Commission does not rule out import levies on newly acquired U.S. agricultural products after August 3, and related Chinese companies have suspended the purchase of U.S.agricultural products,” the Commerce Ministry said.

On July 1, Trump said that China had not fulfilled a promise to buy large volumes of U.S. farm products and vowed to impose a 10 percent fee on US$300 billion of Chinese imports starting September 1.

The Commerce Ministry considered that such fare increase is “a serious violation” of what was agreed between Trump and President Xi Jinping at the June G20 summit in Osaka.

The Chinese announcement is a response to a trade war unleashed by President Trump in 2018, which intensified when he announced new tariff measures last week, allegedly because trade negotiations had not progressed.

On Monday, as a result of unilateral actions by U.S., China let its currency weaken past the key 7-yuan-per-dollar level for the first time since April 2008.

A weaker yuan means that Chinese dollar-denominated products are cheaper, which would help China to curb the negative effect of the U.S. tariffs on its competitiveness, although the price to be paid is an increase in the cost of the goods imported by China from the rest of the world.

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