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Donald Trump Threatens To Block China Trade Deal

In the lead-up to this weekend's leaders meeting, Trump aides have continuously warned Beijing negotiators that threats by the President should be taken seriously

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Trump, U.S.
Donald Trump. VOA

US President Donald Trump has said that it was “highly unlikely” he would accept an offer by his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping aimed at averting Trump’s plan to raise tariffs on over $200 billion of Chinese goods to 25 per cent in January 2019.

Trump in a Wall Street Journal interview published on Monday, also warned once again that he was poised to slap a third round of tariffs on Chinese goods if the two leaders fail to broker an end to the trade rift when they meet later this week in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on the sidelines of the G20 summit, CNN reported.

“If we don’t make a deal, then I’m going to put the $267 billion additional on,” said Trump in the interview, adding the tariff level could either be 10 or 25 per cent.

Trump said in the interview that could include tariffs on Apple products imported from China, including iPhones and laptops.

Apple’s stock fell 1.5 per cent in after-hours trading, erasing earlier gains from the day.

“Maybe. Maybe. Depends on what the rate is,” the President said. “I mean, I can make it 10 per cent, and people could stand that very easily.”

Donald Trump, U.S.
Donald Trump. VOA

The tariffs have drawn complaints from American businesses, who are responsible for paying the import duties.

It’s also spurred concerns about renewed inflation, just as the Federal Reserve is set to raise interest rates in December.

More than 100 S&P companies have already pre-emptively telegraphed during the third quarter earnings calls the damage further tariffs would impose on the US economy, CNN said.

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Multiple companies including Walmart, the country’s biggest retailer, have warned that prices on everyday goods like shampoo, detergents and paper goods will get more expensive for consumers.

In the lead-up to this weekend’s leaders meeting, Trump aides have continuously warned Beijing negotiators that threats by the President should be taken seriously.

Vice President Mike Pence said earlier this month that Trump wasn’t in any rush to end the trade war and was willing to “more than double” the tariffs it has already placed on $250 billion in Chinese goods. (IANS)

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U.S. To End Waivers For Iran Oil imports

Oil exports are a key source of revenue for Tehran, which has been hit hard by the reimposition of U.S. sanctions.

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (file photo)
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. RFERL

U.S. President Donald Trump has decided not to reissue waivers in May allowing importers to buy Iranian oil without facing U.S. sanctions, the White House said in a statement on April 21.

The United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates “have agreed to take timely action to assure that global demand is met as all Iranian oil is removed from the market,” the White House said.

“This decision is intended to bring Iran’s oil exports to zero, denying the regime its principal source of revenue,” the statement added.

The decision means sanctions waivers for five nations, including China and India, Japan, South Korea and Turkey, won’t be renewed when they expire on May 2.

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The move is part of the Trump administration’s tough line on Iran. VOA

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Washington has had “extensive and productive discussions with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and other major producers to ease this transition and ensure sufficient supply.”

U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (Republican-Texas) applauded the end of oil waivers for Iran.

“This decision will deprive the ayatollahs of billions of dollars that they would have spent undermining the security of the United States and our allies, building up Iran’s nuclear and ballistic-missile programs and financing global terrorism,” he said.

The move is part of the Trump administration’s tough line on Iran.

“We will continue to apply maximum pressure on the Iranian regime until its leaders change their destructive behavior, respect the rights of the Iranian people, and return to the negotiating table,” Pompeo said in an April 22 statement.

oil-refinery
“This decision is intended to bring Iran’s oil exports to zero, denying the regime its principal source of revenue,” the statement added. Pixabay

Oil exports are a key source of revenue for Tehran, which has been hit hard by the reimposition of U.S. sanctions.

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Ahead of Washington’s announcement, an unamed Iranian Oil Ministry source told the semiofficial Tasnim news agency that the United States will fail to cut Iranian oil exports to zero.

“Whether the waivers continue or not, Iran’s oil exports will not be zero under any circumstances unless Iranian authorities decide to stop oil exports…and this is not relevant now,” Tasnim quoted the unnamed “informed source” as saying. (RFERL)