WASHINGTON/BEIJING: US President Donald Trump on Tuesday (Jun 11) defended the use of tariffs as part of his trade strategy while China vowed a tough response if the United States insists on escalating trade tensions amid ongoing negotiations.

"Tariffs are a great negotiating tool," Trump tweeted, one day after saying he was ready to impose another round of punitive tariffs on China.

On Monday, the Republican president said he would raise tariffs on Chinese imports further if he cannot make progress in trade talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 summit later this month.

Trump has repeatedly said he is getting ready to meet Xi at the summit in Osaka, Japan, at the end of June, but China has not confirmed it.

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