The trade dispute between the U.S. and China is hurting U.S. and European companies operating in China, with firms planning to cut investment as manufacturing costs increase and demand for products drop.

American companies warned that an escalation could cause even greater pain, according to an Aug. 29 to Sept. 5 survey of more than 430 American companies conducted by AmCham China and AmCham Shanghai. The polling found that more than 60 percent of the firms were hurt by the initial round of tariffs between the two governments, with 74 percent foreseeing harm from future U.S. tariffs and 68 percent from potential Chinese retaliatory duties.

The U.S. and China have engaged in a series of tit-for-tat tariffs since July, when President Donald Trump started slapping duties on $50 billion of Chinese imports. Trump raised the stakes last week, announcing he’s willing to impose tariffs on an additional $267 billion in Chinese goods, on top of a proposed $200 billion his administration is already considering. China has said it would be forced to retaliate to all of the U.S. measures.

With the new round of trade barriers, “the U.S. administration runs the risk of a downward spiral of attack and counter attack, benefiting no one,” said William Zarit, chairman of AmCham China.

Source: Bloomberg.com

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