Executive Intelligence Review


Trump Proclaims His Friendship with Xi Jinping No Matter What Happens on Tariffs

April 8, 2018 (EIRNS)—In the midst of great concern internationally over potential for a “U.S.-China trade war,” AP reported President Donald Trump’s tweet Sunday morning on the tariff subject.

“China will take down its Trade Barriers because it is the right thing to do. Taxes will become Reciprocal & a deal will be made on Intellectual Property. Great future for both countries!”

wrote the President. And followed with: “Chinese President Xi Jinping and I will always be friends, no matter what happens with our dispute on trade.”

There has been mixed messaging by others in the administration. While Treasury Secretary Mnuchin told CNBC in an April 6 interview “it’s possible there could be a trade war,” both Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and economic advisor Larry Kudlow have spoken only of negotiations and bargaining tactics only. Kudlow on Fox News Sunday April 8 again said tariffs are “just an element in the discussion with China.”

Kudlow has otherwise said that the President called for a “second list” of threatened tariffs because the first list threatening $50 billion in products represented 10% of China’s exports to America, whereas China’s retaliatory $50 billion list would hit more than 35% of American exports to China; with Trump’s additional demand for a $100 billion list of products, 30% of China’s exports would theoretically be taxed 25%.

Notably, strong support for Trump’s tariffs against China is coming from two leading liberal Democrats, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Sherrod Brown. Brown is running for re-election in Ohio on support of Trump’s economic policies. Warren has just completed a several-day visit to China in which she was quoted in Chinese media supporting heavy tariffs. Warren had just met with former Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and Xi’s economic advisor and Vice Premier Liu He.