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China state media blasts US after Trump threats

The world’s two largest economies have been locked in an increasingly bitter trade war which has seen them level tariffs on each other’s exports.

FILE: A Chinese bank clerk shows off 10000 Japanese Yen notes among the stacks of 100 yuan notes, at a bank in Huaibei, east China's Anhui province on 29 May 2012. Picture: AFP.

BEIJING - Chinese state media on Monday blasted the United States after US President Donald Trump announced additional tariffs on goods from China and lashed out at China and ordered US companies to find “alternatives” to China.

The world’s two largest economies have been locked in an increasingly bitter trade war which has seen them level tariffs on each other’s exports. Trump announced an additional duty on some $550 billion in targeted Chinese goods on Friday, hours after China unveiled retaliatory tariffs on $75 billion worth of US goods. However, he appeared on Sunday to back off on his threat to order US companies out of China.

The official China Daily said in an editorial that Washington would “never be allowed to control China’s fate”.

“It has become unquestionably clear that his administration’s tariff war against China is politically motivated. What Washington wants from its largest trade partner is for it to be content to play second fiddle and meekly do as it demands,” the English-language paper wrote in an editorial.

“Washington has again taken the initiative to escalate the fight in the hope that Beijing will throw in the sponge as early as possible. But Beijing regards the trade war as an unavoidable trial by fire, from which the country will emerge stronger.”

The Global Times, a widely-read tabloid published by the ruling Communist Party’s officialPeople’s Daily, said leaving the Chinese market would be “suicide” for US companies, especially for auto firms.

“US companies are welcome to invest and operate in the Chinese market, but if some US companies want to obey Trump’s order and join Washington’s trade war, the result is bleak. A decision to give up the Chinese market is just suicide,” the paper said in its editorial.

The trade war has damaged global growth, upset allies, and raised market fears that the world economy will tip into a recession.

Asian shares sank on Monday as the latest salvo in the Sino-US trade war shook confidence in the world economy and sent investors steaming to the safe harbours of sovereign bonds and gold, while slugging emerging market currencies.

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