Iowa, a state that has been especially hard hit by Trump’s trade policies, was greeted with a four-page advertising supplement from China in the local Sunday newspaper.
Des Moines Register, Iowa’s largest newspaper, carried the ad paid for by the Chinese government, which provided China’s take on the escalating trade war between China and the United States, according to Bloomberg.
With the additional $200 billion in new tariffs on Chinese exports to the U.S. which took effect on Monday, Iowans have become more concerned. In response, China has retaliated with more tariffs of its own, imposing $110 billion on U.S. products.
The insert was labeled “paid for and prepared solely by China Daily, an official publication of the People’s Republic of China.”
Touting the mutual benefits of U.S.-China trade, the ad featured a story on President Xi Jinping’s “fun days in Iowa,’’ which highlights his relationship with the state spanning about three decades.
The supplement, which is viewed as China’s its first effort to go straight to U.S. voters, went on to criticize U.S. President Trump’s trade policies.
It further noted how Chinese importers are now pushed to go to South America for soybeans, highlighting that the effects on soybean farmers are “the fruit of a president’s folly.”
Two huge commodity exports that China is targeting from Iowa are soybeans and pork, SDPB reports.
A research from Iowa State University estimated that the state’s economy could lose between $1.05 billion and $2 billion from the tariff war.
“Iowans are nervous,” Joe Murphy, from the Greater Des Moines Partnership, the regional chamber of commerce, was quoted as saying. “We’re obviously an agricultural state. We have a significant presence in advanced manufacturing, and our state economy really depends on our ability to have access to those foreign markets.” China paramount among them.
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