President Donald Trump on Wednesday vowed to impose additional tariffs on China if a trade deal is not reached.
“When tariffs go on in China we are taking in billions and billions of dollars — we never took in 10 cents — now you have another $325 billion that I haven’t taxed yet — it’s ripe for taxing — for putting tariffs on,” he said during an exclusive interview with FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo.
Trump is expected to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday to discuss trade between the world’s two largest economies. The result could have implications for the markets and the global economy.
“This never happened to China. Now what is happening is people are moving out of China. Companies are moving out of China, by the way, some are coming back to the United States because they don’t want to pay the tariff, etc., etc. But it’s been an incredible thing. Am I happy now? Absolutely. Now I would do additional tariffs by very substantial additional tariffs if that doesn’t work if we don’t make a deal,” he explained.
Although it’s “possible” to reach a good deal, Trump said his “plan B” may include a 10 percent tariff on the remaining "$600 billion" worth of goods.
"So we have much more than $300 billion worth of products," he said. "Now what’s going to happen ... all of those companies will move out of China – most of them—and they’ll move to other places like Vietnam and other places that take advantage of us, and we’ll start working on that too ... I don't want to do too many at one time.”
Trump said China knows “what we have to have” in order to reach an agreement on trade.
“We don’t have intellectual property rights protections, we don’t have the opening of China,” he said. “You know, China’s not open. We’re open, but China’s not open. So, if we don’t have the openings of China, if we don’t have the things that we negotiated, and maybe even more than that.”
“Look, right now we're getting 25 percent on $250 billion of goods -- nobody ever heard of such a thing -- it’s massive amounts of money. Don’t let anyone tell you that we’re paying -- China’s paying for it,” he explained.
Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC on Wednesday that progress on a trade deal was about 90 percent complete before trade talks broke down.
“We were about 90 percent of the way there [with a deal] and I think there’s a path to complete this,” Mnuchin said. “The message we want to hear is that they want to come back to the table and continue because I think there is a good outcome for their economy and the U.S. economy to get balanced trade and to continue to build on this relationship."