Biden Sharply Hikes U.S. Tariffs On Chinese Imports

2 weeks ago President Joe Biden unveiled a bundle of steep tariff increases on Tuesday (May 14).

They are aimed at $18 billion of Chinese imports including electric vehicles, computer chips and medical products.

The White House cited "unacceptable risks" to U.S. "economic security".

It said those threats came from unfair Chinese practices flooding global markets with cheap goods.

Biden will raise tariffs this year from 25% to 100% on Chinese-made EVs, among multiple other increased levies.

"Certain" critical minerals will also go from nothing to 25%.

More tariffs will follow next year and 2026 on semiconductors, whose tariff rate will double to 50%.

Tariffs on some steel and aluminum products will also take effect this year, the White House said.

Official data showed the U.S. imported $427 billion in goods from China last year, and exported $148 billion to the world's number 2 economy.

This trade gap has persisted for decades and is an ever more sensitive topic in Washington.

The Biden administration further said former President Donald Trump's 2020 trade deal with China did not increase American exports or boost American manufacturing jobs.

It also argued the 10% across-the-board tariffs on goods from all points of origin Trump has proposed would frustrate U.S. allies and raise prices.

Trump has floated tariffs of 60% or higher on all Chinese goods.

Biden Administration officials said their measures are "carefully targeted," and unlikely to worsen inflation.

They also downplayed the risk of retaliation from Beijing.

Biden has struggled to convince voters of his economic policies despite a backdrop of low unemployment and above-trend economic growth.

The President has said he wants to win this era of competition with China but not to launch a trade war.

He has worked in recent months to ease tensions in one-on-one talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

On Tuesday, China strongly criticized the U.S. decision.

And it vowed it will take resolute measures to defend its rights and interests.