Timeline: How the US ended up in a global trade war
Tit-for-tat tariffs are affecting global supply chains trading thousands of products, from washing machines to soybeans.
Leading up to the presidential election, Donald Trump campaigned vehemently against free trade deals, claiming they were bad for American jobs, manufacturing and the economy.
Businesses grew concerned about the rhetoric, worrying what the dismantling of free trade deals could mean for their imports, exports and supply chains. In 2017, protectionist trade policy became the top business concern in the apparel and fashion industry — a drastic increase over the figures in 2016.
The first tariffs were announced in January 2018 on imports of solar panels. But that escalated quickly, to tariffs on billions of dollars of goods among the world’s largest trading partners.
So how did we get here? See the timeline below, or click to filter tariffs by country. We’ll continue to update this list as more news becomes available.
The tariffs follow a first round of taxes on $34 billion of imports from China that began July 6, bringing the total to $50 billion.
China's announcement came after President Donald Trump recommended increasing proposed duties on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports to 25%, up from 10% announced in July
After a meeting between President Donald Trump and President of the EU Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, the two released a joint statement agreeing set up a working group to lower trade barriers.
The announcement came in response to China's retaliatory tariffs on $34 billion of U.S. goods. China promise "firm and forceful measure in return," but the country has only about $80 billion of U.S. imports remaining to tax.
The U.S. imposed 25% duties on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports, and China retaliated swifty with tariffs of equal measure. China’s Commerce Ministry said the U.S. has "ignited the largest trade war in economic history."
China announced Friday it would impose a 25% tariff on 545 U.S. products worth $34 billion, a reciprocal response to the U.S. action against 818 Chinese products announced that same day.
In response to steel and aluminum tariffs, Canada announced tariffs on $12.8 billion in US products, and Mexico declared it would place duties on steel along with other products, totaling $3 billion. The European Union called it a "bad day for world trade."
The U.S. let tariff exemptions expire, resulting in duties of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum for Canada, Mexico and the European Union.
The tariffs cover "industrially significant technology” and are aimed to punish China for intellectual property abuses.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Fox News that the U.S. was "putting the trade war on hold."
Tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, Mexico and the European Union were set to take effect May 1, but the Trump administration granted a 30-day exemption.
In retaliation for steel and aluminum tariffs, China imposed duties between 15% and 25% on more than 128 products, including several food and agricultural products.
This announcement marked the first tariffs during Trump’s administration targeted directly at China, sparking fears of a trade war among retail and tech industry leaders.
Trump signed proclamations imposing a 25% tariff on five classifications of steel articles and a 10% tariff on six types of aluminum products against all countries but Canada and Mexico, effective March 23, 2018.
The tariff threats came in retaliation to U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum and target $3.5B in imports to the EU.
Donald Trump said U.S. manufacturing industries had been "decimated" by unfair trade policies.
Two U.S. solar manufacturers petitioned for import relief, blaming low-price imports, mostly from Chinese companies based in other countries, for their predicament.
Follow Shefali Kapadia on Twitter