Representative image. Photograph:( Reuters )
Chinese state media on Thursday accused the United States of a "mobster mentality" in its move to implement additional tariffs on Chinese goods, and warned Beijing had all the necessary means to fight back.
Although the tariff war between the US and China has been going on for several months, with both sides issuing threats and counter-threats of new import restrictions, Chinese media has refrained from open criticism of the US president.
Earlier, Chinese state-owned newspaper the China Daily mocked Trump’s claim that sanctions are effective, calling it “wishful thinking,” Reuters reported.
Beijing late on Wednesday said it would slap additional tariffs of 25 per cent on US $16 billion worth of US imports, in retaliation to news the United States plans to begin collecting 25 per cent extra in tariffs on US $16 billion of Chinese goods from August 23.
"The two countries' trade conflict, which is merely push and shove at the moment, is likely to escalate into more than just a scuffle if the US administration cannot marshal its mobster mentality," Reuters reported.
"China continues to do its utmost to avoid a trade war, but in the face of the US's ever greater demand for protection money, China has no choice but to fight back," it said.
So far, China has now either imposed or proposed tariffs on US $110 billion of US goods, representing the vast majority of its annual imports of American products. Big-ticket US items that are still not on any list are crude oil and large aircraft.
"China has confidence in protecting its own interests, has many means," state broadcaster CCTV said on its early morning news show.
One of China's largest newspapers called Trump’s words an example of his “ability to elasticize the truth.”
Earlier this week, another Chinese media outlet, the People’s Daily, also went against Trump, calling his actions “streetfighter-style deceitful drama of extortion and intimidation.”