The announcement, which would come just days ahead of Trump’s first meeting with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, is widely seen as targeting China. However, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, during his interaction with White House reporters, insisted that the executive order expected to be signed today is not just about China.
It is about all major countries with which the United States has significant trade deficit. Reading out the list of countries with which the US has significant trade deficit, Ross also named India down the line with a trade deficit of USD 24 billion.
The US has a massive trade deficit of USD 347 billion with China, followed by Japan (USD 68.9 billion), Germany (USD 64.9), Mexico (USD 63.2 billion), Ireland (USD 35.9 billion) and Vietnam (USD 32 billion).
Other countries mentioned in the list were Italy, South Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, France, Switzerland, Taiwan, Indonesia and Canada.
As per the executive order, Ross said President would instruct the Department of Commerce and the US Trade Representative to review and report back to him within 90 days on actionable items to reduce the trade deficits. The report among other things would also examine issues like currency misalignment, foreign excess capacity or constraints imposed by the WTO on the United States have contributed to the bilateral deficits.