Skip to Content
Tech policy

Trump revealed the high-tech Chinese products hit by his tariffs—so China struck right back

The president’s bid to slow China’s technological advancement could escalate into a trade war, and end up disadvantaging American businesses in the process.

Backstory: Last month, Trump vowed to place 25 percent levies on some imports from China. The aim is to punish the nation for alleged theft of US intellectual property, which the current administration says is helping China’s rise as a tech power.

The news: The Office of the US Trade Representative published a list of $50 billion worth of Chinese goods that will be subject to the levies. They include semiconductors, robots, consumer electronics components, nuclear reactors, vehicles, drugs, and more.

Reciprocal action: China says the move “gravely violated” the values of the World Trade Organization. It has already placed new tariffs on 106 types of US products imported into China, including chemicals, airplanes, and cars, worth a total of $50 billion.

Why it matters: The tariffs show that Trump is serious about wanting to slow China’s rise as a tech power. But the move makes a trade war more likely than ever, which, despite Trump’s confidence of winning, may hurt US tech firms. And, as Gadfly more broadly notes: the tariffs mean US manufacturing firms “might as well give back half of that $26-billion-a-year tax cut they just got.”

Deep Dive

Tech policy

How conservative Facebook groups are changing what books children read in school

Parents are gathering online to review books and lobby schools to ban them, often on the basis of sexual content.

Why can’t tech fix its gender problem?

A new generation of tech activists, organizers, and whistleblowers, most of whom are female, non-white, gender-diverse, or queer, may finally bring change.

How the idea of a “transgender contagion” went viral—and caused untold harm

A single paper on the notion that gender dysphoria can spread among young people helped galvanize an anti-trans movement.

The most popular content on Facebook belongs in the garbage

Meta’s own report into what gets the most clicks confirms what many of us know already: spammy memes win.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.