US president instructs trade agency to mull options as onlookers fear tit-for-tat will become full-blown trade war

Donald Trump has instructed the US trade representative to consider slapping $100bn in additional tariffs on Chinese goods in an escalating standoff over trade.

Trump said in a statement on Thursday that the further tariffs were being considered “in light of China’s unfair retaliation” against earlier US trade actions. He added that the US trade representative had determined that China “has repeatedly engaged in practices to unfairly obtain America’s intellectual property”.

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