China hints it may retaliate against US for new tariffs

President Trump escalated a trade war with China.

BEIJING -- China’s Commerce Ministry on Tuesday criticized President Trump’s latest threat of tariffs, calling it an “act of extreme pressure and blackmail.”

Trump on Monday threatened to impose additional tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods following an announcement last week that he would seek to slap a 25 percent tariff on $50 billion in Chinese imports to the U.S.

“If the United States loses its rationality and unveils another list of Chinese products for additional tariffs, China will have no choice but to take comprehensive measures combining quantitative and qualitative ones to resolutely strike back," the ministry said in a statement.

Trump said the tariffs were “essential to preventing further unfair transfers of American technology and intellectual property to China, which will protect American jobs.”

He added, “After the legal process is complete, these tariffs will go into effect if China refuses to change its practices, and also if it insists on going forward with the new tariffs that it has recently announced.”

Beijing responded to Trump's announcement last week by applying tariffs to 659 U.S. products, including agricultural products, cars and marine products.

Companies like Apple are worried China could cause delays in supply chains and increase scrutiny of products under the guise of national security concerns, The New York Times reported.

Ford Motor is already facing delays at Chinese ports, according to Reuters.