Imported autos are being targeted with tariffs for “national security” reasons – but why? Congress introduced bipartisan bills to restrain the administration’s use of Section 232 tariffs. In a still-confidential 2019 report, the Department reportedly found that imported autos like the Volkswagon GTI “threaten to impair the national security” and recommended that the president impose tariffs as high as 25 percent.
The U.S. and China signed a trade deal on Jan 15. Attempting to rewire China’s economic system cannot be achieved in one pass – an agreement this ambitious would have to be built in phases. What does that mean for the future of trade deals?
There are some in the United States who are frustrated with the administration’s willingness to toss out the traditional trade policy playbook, but if trade talks over soybeans and intellectual property protections can be leveraged to address illicit trade in deadly fentanyl, we can all get on board with that.
New public opinion research shows that the majority of Americans worry the tariffs will do more harm than good for the economy.
The meeting between President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping in Argentina in late November may prove to be a turning point for not only for the US-China relationship, but for global trade. Both leaders enter these discussions knowing the far more important question is whether there can be a sustainable co-existence between a Western market-driven economy with democratic ideals and a centrally-managed Chinese economy led by the Communist Party of China.
President Trump just announced $50 billion worth of tariffs and other penalties on China for its theft of intellectual property, technology, and trade secrets. China will not change its behavior absent external pressure — pushing back against the constant drain from Chinese IP theft is long overdue.
Although the steel and aluminum tariffs are promoted by the Trump administration as a strategy to seek fairness for those industries, the tariffs will incite retaliation by trading partners, imposing significant costs on large numbers of U.S. producers and consumers who have nothing to do with these industries’ grievances.
The few domestic companies that may (or may not) benefit from special treatment shouldn’t outweigh the costs for the rest of the economy.
The truth about trade agreements is that they’re almost never just about trade. The United States’ free trade agreement with South Korea is no exception.
It would be a guessing game to try to predict what the president might do specifically on trade in 2018. Whatever he decides, there are trends morphing the trading system even as the U.S. Government works to figure out its role in shaping it.