China warns USA against tariffs as trade talks end

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U.S. Commerce Secretary Ross, second from left, is in Beijing for trade talks after Washington ratcheted up tensions with a new threat of tariff hikes on Chinese high-tech exports.

If Washington moves forward with sanctions, "all the economic and trade achievements negotiated by the two parties will be void", Xinhua state news agency said in a statement on Sunday.

"To implement the consensus reached in Washington, the two sides have had good communication in various areas such as agriculture and energy, and have made positive and concrete progress while relevant details are yet to be confirmed by both sides", the statement said.

More than 50 US officials are in Beijing for the trade talks.

But the truce appeared to end with last week's announcement Washington was going ahead with tariff hikes on technology goods and also would impose curbs on Chinese investment and purchases of U.S. high-tech exports. "If the USA imposes tariffs on Chinese products, the Chinese side may announce retaliatory measures on American products as well".

However, the Trump administration's announcement late Tuesday that it would impose 25 percent tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese technology by the end of this month cast doubt on trade talks between the two countries, the AP noted.

Washington's positions in the trade talks with Beijing have shifted as Trump's team of hardliners and more mainstream advisors compete to push their views.

There was no immediate comment or statement from the U.S. delegation or from Ross himself. But the truce appeared to end with this week's announcement Washington was going ahead with tariff increases on technology goods and would also impose curbs on Chinese investment and purchases of United States hi-tech exports.

The United States and China have threatened tit-for-tat tariffs on goods worth up to $150 billion each.Xinhua said China's attitude has been consistent, which is that it is willing to increase imports from all countries, including the United States.

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Ross, who was preceded in Beijing last week by more than 50 U.S. officials, is expected during the two-day visit to try to secure long-term purchases of USA farm and energy commodities to help shrink the United States trade deficit.

Beijing warned all the commitments it had made so far were premised on "not fighting a trade war".

China's delegation included central bank governor Yi Gang, commerce minister Zhong Shan, and Ning Jizhe, a deputy head of the powerful planning body the National Development and Reform Commission.

At the center of the row was the White House's decision to slap tariffs on steel and aluminum produced by key United States allies in the European Union and Canada.

Before Ross arrived with his team for the two-day talks, the USA and China had threatened tit-for-tat tariffs on goods worth up to $150 billion each.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the dispute was "on hold" and the tariff hike would be postponed.

Ross and Liu held a working dinner Saturday ahead of their talks.

That might alienate allies who share complaints about Chinese technology policy and a flood of low-cost steel, aluminum and other exports they say are the result of improper subsidies and hurt foreign competitors.