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China raises its tariff on some US nylon products to 96.5%
Howard Richman, 4/26/2010

The Chinese government has continued its successful policy of imposing tariffs and non-tariff barriers upon U.S.  products.

1. In 2009, the Chinese government excluded American products from its catalogs of the products that could be purchased with its consumer subsidies. Through this means and others it reduced imports from the United States despite the growth of the Chinese economy by a reported 8.7%.

2. In February, new Chinese tariffs of up to 105% on American chicken products helped the Chinese government reduce imports from the United States, despite growth of the Chinese economy by a reported 11.9%.

3. On April 13, China's Commerce Ministry announced new duties on a type of U.S. steel used in the power sector. 

4. This week, the Chinese government raised its tariffs on some U.S. nylon from 36.2% to 96.5%, The Wall Street Journal's Market Watch reported on April 22:

China's Commerce Ministry imposed a 96.5% duty on certain types of nylon imports from the U.S., more than doubling a preliminary anti-dumping tariff of 36.2% set in October, according to a report by the Xinhua news agency....

The Obama administration lets China practice mercantilism, the strategy of maximizing exports and minimizing imports. In 2009, we bought $305 billion worth of goods and services from China, while the Chinese government only let its people buy $85 billion worth from us (according to preliminary BEA statistics).

U.S. exports to China would increase if the Obama administration were to insist upon balanced trade, as permitted by a special WTO rule for trade deficit countries. He could impose an across-the-board tariff on all Chinese goods whose rate would be kept proportional to the U.S.-China trade deficit. The Chinese government would then encourage its many many barriers to U.S. products.

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    Wikipedia:

  • [An] extensive argument for balanced trade, and a program to achieve balanced trade is presented in Trading Away Our Future, by Raymond Richman, Howard Richman and Jesse Richman. “A minimum standard for ensuring that trade does benefit all is that trade should be relatively in balance.” [Balanced Trade entry]

    Journal of Economic Literature:

  • [Trading Away Our Future] Examines the costs and benefits of U.S. trade and tax policies. Discusses why trade deficits matter; root of the trade deficit; the “ostrich” and “eagles” attitudes; how to balance trade; taxation of capital gains; the real estate tax; the corporate income tax; solving the low savings problem; how to protect one’s assets; and a program for a strong America....

    Atlantic Economic Journal:

  • In Trading Away Our Future   Richman ... advocates the immediate adoption of a set of public policy proposal designed to reduce the trade deficit and increase domestic savings.... the set of public policy proposals is a wake-up call... [February 17, 2009 review by T.H. Cate]