— this post authored by Felix Richter

Having announced tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, the Trump administration is reportedly getting ready to has hit China with more tariffs in response to the country’s alleged intellectual property theft.

According to people familiar with the matter cited by Reuters, Trump aims to impose tariffs on Chinese goods worth $60 billion a year, predominantly targeting the technology and telecommunications sector. Those tariffs were announced today.

Experts are certain that such drastic measures would provoke retaliatory action from Beijing which could have disastrous consequences for U.S. industries and companies doing business in China. The agricultural and automotive sectors are just two examples of industries relying heavily on exports to China.

A trade war with China could even hamper Apple’s chances of becoming the first trillion-dollar company in the world, as the iPhone-maker relies on China both as a supplier and as a key market. As the following chart illustrates, Greater China (incl. Hong Kong and Taiwan) accounted for 20 percent of the company’s sales in 2017, up from just 4 percent in 2010.

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