BEIJING (Dispatches) -- The trade war with the United States will only make China stronger and will never bring the country to its knees, the Communist Party’s People’s Daily wrote in a front page commentary that evoked the patriotic spirit of past wars.
The world’s two largest economies are locked in an increasingly acrimonious trade dispute that has seen them level tariffs on each other’s imports.
Tensions worsened this week after the Trump administration officially added China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd to a trade blacklist, immediately enacting restrictions that will make it extremely difficult for the telecom giant to do business with U.S. companies.
In a stridently nationalistic commentary, the ruling party’s official newspaper described China’s determination to protect it national interests and dignity as being as "firm as a boulder”.
"The trade war can’t bring China down. It will only harden us to grow stronger,” it said.
"What kind of storms have not been seen, what bumps have not experienced for China, with its more than 5,000 years of civilization? In the face of hurricanes, the nearly 1.4 billion Chinese people have confidence and stamina.”
China’s confidence comes from the spirit of its people’s perseverance and endless struggle, it added, citing major disasters like floods, SARS and 2008’s massive Sichuan earthquake.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Wednesday he will likely travel to Beijing soon to try to salvage talks aimed at ending their months-long trade war.
But China's Commerce Ministry said on Thursday it had no information on any plans for a U.S. trade delegation visit.
Taoran Notes, a WeChat account run by the Economic Daily, said in a post late Thursday that without sincerity there was no point in coming for talks and nothing to talk about.
"There can't be seen any substantive negotiating sincerity from the United States. Conversely, methods of extreme pressure are spreading," the post said.
Trump initiated what is effectively a trade war with China last year, when he first imposed unusually heavy tariffs on imports from the country. Since then, the two sides have exchanged tariffs on more than $360 billion in two-way trade.
A majority of economists surveyed by Reuters suggested Friday that the trade war has increased the risk of another economic recession in the U.S.
The U.S. economy is forecast to have already lost considerable momentum, slowing to 2.0 percent in the current quarter from 3.2 percent in the first three months of the year, according to median forecasts from the latest monthly poll of 120 economists.