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China and the US hit each other with new tariff hikes as talks fail

Trade talks between China and the US over a resolution to the trade tensions that have been building up between them since the start of 2018 appear to have collapsed.

The latest round of talks on reaching an agreement began on May 6 with both sides speaking optimistically about the prospects of success. By the end of the same week, however, the US said it would increase tariffs from 10% to 25% on goods with a combined value of around $200 billion per year that China imports from it.

On May 13, China responded. A spokesperson for the ministry of commerce in Beijing said: “This worsening of the commercial tension between China and the US does not correspond to the interests of our two peoples, or those of the entire world. China laments this greatly but has no option but to take necessary counter-measures.”

Tariffs of 25% will apply to almost 2,500 products that the US imports from China from June 1. Other goods will be subject to duties ranging from 5% to 20%.

It is not clear to what extent shipments of hides, leather and leathergoods will be affected by these increases in tariffs.

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