President Donald Trump said on Thursday tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods will kick-in at 12:01 a.m. EST on Friday morning. Another $16 billion are expected to go into effect in two weeks, he said.
Aboard Air Force One on his way to a rally in Montana, Trump told reporters he would also consider imposing additional tariffs on $500 billion in Chinese goods, should Beijing retaliate.
First “34, and then you have another 16 in two weeks and then as you know we have 200 billion in abeyance and then after the 200 billion we have 300 billion in abeyance. Ok? So we have 50 plus 200 plus almost 300,” Trump said.
“It’s only on China,” he added.
Trump’s statements reinforce earlier threats that he would escalate the trade conflict. The dispute with China has roiled financial markets worldwide, including stocks, currencies and the global trade of commodities from soybeans to coal.
China has said it will not “fire the first shot”, but its customs agency made clear on Thursday that Chinese tariffs on U.S. goods would take effect immediately after U.S. duties on Chinese goods kick in.
This story is developing. Please check back for updates.
–Thomson Reuters contributed to this report.