President Trump has given the green light to proceed with tariffs against $200 billion in Chinese goods, sources told Fox News Friday.
The timing of the actual application of the tariffs was not clear, but the move would mark the latest in an escalating trade war with Beijing as Trump seeks to combat what he sees as unfair trade practices from China.
The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday that the tariff level will likely be set at about 10 percent, which would be below the 25 percent the administration had initially floated.
“The President has been clear that he and his administration will continue to take action to address China’s unfair trade practices,” the White House said in a statement Friday. “We encourage China to address the long standing concerns raised by the United States.”
China and the U.S. have imposed 25 percent tariffs on $50 billion of each other’s goods. This week, the U.S. invited China to hold talks on the tariff dispute.
“We have indeed received an invitation from the U.S. side. We welcome it,” a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman told The Associated Press. “Now the two sides are in communication on relevant details.”
Envoys met in August in Washington but reported no progress. The Journal reported that the Chinese had hoped that any final decision on tariffs would be delayed until after the next round of talks.
China has threatened to retaliate against $60 billion of American products if Trump goes ahead with his tariffs.
Fox Business’ Edward Lawrence and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
John Roberts currently serves as the chief White House correspondent for FOX News Channel (FNC). He joined the network as a senior national correspondent in January 2011, based in the Atlanta bureau.