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US to impose 10% tariff on $300 billion of Chinese goods September 1: Trump

Washington — The US will impose a 10% tariff on the remaining $300 billion worth of Chinese goods September 1, when trade talks between the two countries resume, President Donald Trump said Thursday.

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The tariff escalation, while scaled back from Trump's earlier threat of a 25% tariff, could spur a fresh round of retaliatory tariffs by China.

Trump made the comments on Twitter after US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer returned from trade talks in Shanghai this week.

Related story: Oil races lower after Trump announces fresh tariffs, escalating US-China trade war

Trump said he thought the talks had neared a deal three months ago, "but sadly, China decided to renegotiate the deal prior to signing." He added that China did not follow through on a promise to buy "large quantities" of US agricultural products.

"We look forward to continuing our positive dialogue with China on a comprehensive trade deal, and feel that the future between our two countries will be a very bright one!" Trump said.

Analysts remain skeptical that the two sides can reach a broad deal to end the trade conflict that has slowed US exports of LNG, crude, soybeans and other agricultural products.

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US crude exports to China dried up in August through November 2018 and again in January even though the product has not been officially targeted by Chinese retaliatory tariffs.

The US exported an average of 247,000 b/d of crude to China in May, up from 62,000 b/d a month earlier, according to US Energy Information Administration data published Wednesday. The shipments peaked in June 2018 at 510,000 b/d.

The ongoing trade dispute has continued to impact LNG trade flows, and absent a resolution those changes are expected to remain in place.

China first imposed a 10% tariff on imports of US LNG in September 2018, in retaliation for tariffs the US imposed on imports of Chinese goods. In June, China raised its tariff on imports of LNG from the US to 25%, in retaliation for increased US tariffs.

-- Meghan Gordon, meghan.gordon@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Jeff Mower, newsdesk@spglobal.com