Many firms have no contingency plans should US-China trade war worsen: Survey

U.S. tariffs are set to kick in on many Chinese-made products on Dec. 15

One-quarter of multinational companies have no contingency plans should the U.S.-China trade war drag on, according to a survey that gathered more than 260 anonymous responses from businesses.

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"When asked about how many months’ worth of contingency plans their organization has in place to cope with the effects of the trade war, the answers showed that companies were still falling short in terms of risk mitigation planning," wrote the authors of the study, which was conducted by German logistics company DHL.

CHINA REPEATS DEMAND FOR ROLLBACK OF US TARIFFS FOR DEAL

Twenty-five percent of respondents said they had no contingency plans, 20.4 percent said they had plans for up to six months and 34 percent said they had prepared for six to 18 months out.

The companies represented industries including health care, technology, automotive, energy, retail, chemicals and more, according to DHL.

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He accompanied by U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, left, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

The least prepared sectors were engineering and manufacturing (47.6 percent had no contingency plans) and automotive and mobility (40 percent had no plans).

Even though a big chunk of firms surveyed said they had no contingency plans, more than two-thirds reported being impacted by U.S.-China trade tensions.

China expects the U.S. to roll back some tariffs on its exports as part of a trade deal, an official newspaper said Monday, reiterating Beijing's insistence that President Trump’s administration can be "flexible" and "reasonable."

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The comments come amid negotiations on a preliminary "phase one" agreement aimed at resolving the tariff war between the world's two largest economies.

New U.S. tariffs are set to kick in on many Chinese-made products as of Dec. 15. A preliminary deal could avert that.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.