Trump’s trade war escalating between the U.S. and China

Sarah Marx, student

Everyone loses in a trade war, let’s not pretend otherwise. While some think putting tariffs on imported Chinese goods is a smart idea, it actually harms more than it helps. This tariff doesn’t only harm Chinese exporters, it hurts companies that are importing the goods, it hurts the consumers of the products, and it hurts the world market in general.

One of the major arguments given by the United States for the rise in tariffs is that China hasn’t always been known for trading fairly. China contributes to the global economy, so raising tariffs on Chinese goods harms more than just the Chinese economy. Companies throughout the world such as Volkswagen, Harley Davidson and General Motors depend on China for raw materials needed in their products.

Some believe that increasing tariffs will decrease the demand for products and increase the overall costs because companies will have to pay tariffs if they want to import from China. To combat these costs companies either have to eat the cost and lower their own profits, raise the price of the goods to offset the rise in cost or find another market to purchase from. Increasing prices on tariffs provides the opportunity for American companies to increase their prices as well because American companies will be facing less pressure from the pricing of Chinese goods.

A USA Today article reported that David French, senior vice president of government relations for the National Retail Federation said, “A sudden tariff increase with less than a week’s notice would severely disrupt U.S. businesses, especially small companies that have limited resources.”

Other industries, such as U.S. agriculture, have needed significant aid due to the rising tensions between the U.S. and China.

If China and the U.S. want to squabble, why must they bring the entire world into it? Tariffs can put us all at serious risk of a global recession due to tighter financial conditions and weaker global growth. Many companies that don’t want to deal with tariffs are looking to other South Eastern countries in Asia, such as Thailand and Vietnam, to obtain products from. There has also been talk of the U.S. putting a tariff on imported automobiles, which would damage Europe’s exports to the United States.

It’s difficult to say who comes out on top when it comes to tariffs being imposed. Companies pay tariffs to import goods and those costs usually trickle down to the consumer. This may lead to companies going elsewhere for products.

Other countries markets can be affected when major world leaders place tariffs on each other and can cause issues with the global market. Letting other countries economies suffer due to what China and the United States are doing isn’t OK. When making these policies that affect others so strongly, everyone involved (directly and indirectly) should be brought to the table to discuss solutions.