BEIJING — Chinese officials have warned that they will retaliate against American companies if President Trump imposes tariffs on China, an American business group said on Tuesday, with airplanes and agricultural products among the likely targets.
The warning, issued by the American Chamber of Commerce in China, came just hours before Mr. Trump was expected to address the issue during his State of the Union address. The Trump administration is investigating whether it should impose a series of trade actions against China, in areas like technology and intellectual property theft as well as in traditional areas of trade disputes like steel and aluminum.
In December, Mr. Trump included economic challenges posed by China as part of his national security blueprint, vowing that he would pressure China, the world’s second-largest economy, on trade.
Chinese officials have told American business representatives that they are prepared to push back, said William Zarit, the chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China.
“I have been told by certain officials that yes, definitely, there will be retaliation,” he said at a briefing in Beijing, to announce the findings of the group’s 2018 business climate survey.