March 22, 2018 / 4:18 PM / a month ago

Trump administration eyes tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods

WASHINGTON, March 22 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will sign a presidential memorandum on Thursday to potentially slap tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese imports over forced transfer of intellectual property, a senior White House official said.

Trump will sign the memorandum at 12:30 p.m. EDT (1630 GMT) at the White House. The directive will open a consultation period by the U.S. Trade Representative’s office to look at a list of Chinese products that could be targeted, Everett Eissenstat, deputy director of the National Economic Council, told reporters.

In addition, Trump will also direct the U.S. Treasury to propose measures that could restrict Chinese investments in the United States, Eissenstat said.

The tariffs and investment restrictions will be imposed under the U.S. Trade Representative’s “Section 301” investigation into alleged misappropriation of U.S. intellectual property by China.

Reporting by Lesley Wroughton and David Chance Editing by James Dalgleish and Paul Simao

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