China said to call off trade talks as tariff war escalates

Big 5

China has canceled planned trade discussions with the United States as both sides escalate their dispute in the wake of a new round of tariffs, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

This week, President Donald Trump slapped a fresh round of tariffs on Chinese goods ahead of scheduled trade talks with Beijing, placing 10 percent duties on $200 billion of goods. China almost immediately retaliated with tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. products.

The two camps were scheduled to meet in order to dial back tensions, but the Journal reported on Friday that China rescinded a proposal to send two delegations to Washington.

The new 10 percent tariffs are below an original figure of 25 percent floated by the administration earlier. The president is also expected to threaten to hike tariffs again to squeeze Beijing at the negotiating table, but the Chinese have shown no public signs of bending.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had been pressing ahead with attempts to restart trade talks with China.

The White House did not immediately return CNBC’s request for comment.