Chinese state media slam US trade call

Beijing has reacted with anger to a US announcement that it will still impose trade tariffs

Chinese state media have criticised a US announcement that it would press ahead with restrictions on investment by Chinese companies, saying Beijing is ready to fight back if Washington is looking to reignite a trade war.

The United States said on Tuesday it still held the threat of imposing tariffs on $US50 billion ($A67 billion) of imports from China and would use it unless Beijing addressed the issue of theft of American intellectual property.

Washington will also pursue export controls for goods exported to China, the statement from the White House said on Tuesday.

The announcement on Tuesday restated comments by administration officials that both the tariffs and the restrictions remained in place even after the US and China sketched out a deal this month to reduce China's $US375 billion trade surplus with America.

China commerce's ministry reacted harshly, saying it was surprised by the latest US announcement and saw it as contrary to the consensus both sides have reached recently.

State news agency Xinhua said China hoped that the United States would not act impulsively but stood ready to fight to protect its own interests.

"China's attitude, as always, is: we do not want to fight, but we are also not afraid to fight," it said in the commentary by Xinhua reporter Yu Jiaxin.

"China will continue to hold pragmatic consultations with the United States' delegation and hope that the United States will act in accordance with the spirit of the joint statement," it said.

Chinese tabloid the Global Times said the United States was suffering from a "delusion" and warned that the "trade renege could leave Washington dancing with itself".

The widely read Global Times is run by the ruling Communist Party's official People's Daily, although its stance does not necessarily reflect Chinese government policy.

"The Chinese government will have the necessary measures in place to deal with a US withdrawal from any settled agreement. If the US wants to play games, then China would be more than willing to play along and do so until the very end," it said.

The China Daily newspaper said the repeated US claim that China had forced foreign firms to transfer their technologies to Chinese businesses was without evidence and was being used as an excuse to facilitate its trade protectionism.

It said technology transfers between US companies and their Chinese partners were the result of normal business practices, not coercive policies.

An official from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said the trade frictions pose a risk for China's economy.

Alfred Schipke told reporters in Beijing that the tensions should be reduced and he called for co-operation.