Beijing has said it will not "fire the first shot" in a trade war with the United States, but has made clear that Chinese tariffs on American goods would take effect immediately after USA duties on Chinese goods are put in place. The first round of tariffs on China take effect on Friday, and Trump has threatened more.
"Historically whether it's a trade war or a physical war, people go into it thinking it's going to be short-lived", said Cohen, "China wants to have an innovative economy". America is the world's largest exporter of soy beans, and China is the world's largest consumer of them.
Trump has for years slammed what he describes as Beijing's underhanded economic treatment of the United States in terms of trade, with the U.S. trade deficit in goods with China ballooning to a record $375.2 billion last year.
Trade worries are adding to anxiety over cooling economic growth and tighter lending controls that have hit real estate and other industries.
An official at a company in Shanghai that handles customs clearance for importers said to Reuters that the port of Shanghai is said to have put on hold clearing some United States imports through customs.
The start of the trade war likely confirms the widening rupture between Trump and his own Republican Party, a traditional champion of free trade and big business.
According to the propaganda instructions: "The trade conflict is really a war against China's rise, to see who has the greater stamina".
The dispute has roiled financial markets including stocks, currencies and the global trade of commodities from soybeans to coal in recent weeks. Asian equities wobbled but also managed to end up.
China's counterplan calls for $34 billion in duties on such American products as beef, chicken, pork and soybeans - as well as electric and sport-utility vehicles.
The change means China won't begin levying U.S. exports before Friday afternoon, Beijing time. The products, all sold on Chinese e-commerce platforms, ranged from pet food to mixed nuts and whiskey.
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China's tactics were specifically created to hurt Trump supporters, he said. "It's having an impact on businesses that are not making capital investment decisions because of the uncertainty of the situation", she said.
Earlier on Friday, China's state media reportedly lashed out at U.S. President Donald Trump, accusing the White House of behaving like a "gang of hoodlums" as the deadline approached.
He described the United States actions "a violation of world trade rules" and accused Donald Trump of "initiating the largest-scale trade war in economic history".
And despite dire warnings about the impact on the US, Trump believes the robust American economy can outlast its rivals in the current battle.
A little fighting may be the only way the Trump administration clears its mind and allows everyone to sober up", the state-run Global Times said on Friday.
"Its unruliness looks set to have a profoundly damaging impact on the global economic landscape in the coming decades, unless countries stand together to oppose it".
Trump has for years slammed what he describes as Beijing's underhand economic treatment of the United States, with the USA trade deficit in goods with China ballooning to a record US$375.2 billion last year.
China's tariffs on hundreds of US goods include top exports such as soybeans, sorghum and cotton, threatening USA farmers in states that backed Trump in the 2016 USA election, such as Texas and Iowa.
"This is not economic Armageddon". We will not have to hunt our food with pointy sticks. "But it is applying the brakes to a global economy that has less durable momentum than appears to be the case".