China says that it has been "forced to take a necessary counterattack" against the United States because of recent U.S. import taxes on Chinese products.
The U.S. government recently placed tariffs on Chinese imports worth about $34 billion.
American President Donald Trump approved import taxes of 25 percent on more than 800 Chinese products. The tariffs began Friday.
China criticized, what it called, "trade bullying" and warned the tariffs could start worldwide market unrest.
The Chinese government also warned it would react immediately and strongly to new tariffs.
The Chinese Commerce Ministry said Friday the Chinese side promised not to act first. But it said that in order to defend the central interests of the country and people it was forced to make a necessary counterattack.
Ministry spokesman Gao Feng told reporters Thursday that China will not back down to threats. He also noted that about $20 billion of the goods that will be subject to the U.S. tariffs are supported by foreign investors, including many from the United States.
Trump has threatened tariffs on an additional $450 billion worth of Chinese goods if China continues with its promise of tariffs on U.S. exports.
Growing trade tension worries some top officials of the U.S. central bank. They are concerned trade disputes will prevent investment that supports economic growth. The concerns were made public Wednesday in notes from the most recent policy discussion by leaders of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
China warns travelers
The Chinese embassy in Washington has warned its citizens of traveling to the United States as trade tensions intensify.
Chinese tourists were warned of issues such as high medical costs, the possibility of gun violence and robberies, seizures by border agents and natural disasters.
"Public security in the United States is not good," the embassy said, in a statement last week.
On Tuesday, reporters asked China's Foreign Ministry spokesman, Lu Kang, if the timing of China's travel warning was politically influenced. Kang said the embassy was required to issue the alert because the summer is the high point of the travel season for Chinese people visiting the United States.
China often issues warnings for Chinese travelers, usually in areas suffering from war or other problems.
But some foreign governments have accused China of actions such as limiting tourism among Chinese to settle political or trade disputes. China denies these accusations.
The United Nations reported last year that, since 2012, China has led the world in the number of tourists who travel to other countries. The U.N. said Chinese tourists spent $261 billion in foreign countries in 2016. That is more than twice the amount that travelers from the U.S. spent.
Joyce Huang wrote this story for VOANews.com Phil Dierking adapted the story for Learning English. Mario Ritter was the editor.
Would a trade war affect your feelings about traveling to the U.S.? Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.
Words in This Story
bully - n. someone who frightens, hurts, or threatens smaller or weaker people
counterattack - n. an attack that is made in response to an attack by an enemy or opponent
tariff - n. a tax on goods coming into or leaving a country
tourists - n. a person who travels to a place for pleasure