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Apple warns China tariffs to hit products

A wide range of Apple products including the Apple Watch would be affected by proposed US tariffs on Chinese goods, the company has told US trade officials.

Apple did not disclose specific revenues for most of the affected products, but of those the Apple Watch may be the biggest seller. It brought in about $US6.1 billion in revenue last year, according to an estimate from analyst firm Bernstein.

That represents a small portion of Apple's $US229 billion in overall sales.

Apple laid out the impact on its products of the Trump administration's proposed tariffs on $US200 billion worth of Chinese goods in an unsigned letter it submitted on Wednesday to US officials as part of a public comment period.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump, speaking aboard Air Force One, said that he has tariffs on an additional $US267 billion in Chinese goods "ready to go on short notice if I want."

Cell phones, the biggest US import from China, have so far been spared, but would be hit if Trump activates the new tariff list.

"Our concern with these tariffs is that the US will be hardest hit, and that will result in lower US growth and competitiveness and higher prices for US consumers," Apple said in the letter.

The letter did not mention the iPhone, which accounted for about two-thirds of Apple's $US229 billion in revenue in its most recent fiscal year.

The letter also made no mention of the iPad, which brought in $US19.2 billion in sales in the most recent year, or most of its Mac computers, which generated $US25.8 billion.

In its letter, Apple argued that the way US trade officials calculate the US trade balance - attributing the entire value of a product to a country like China where final assembly happens - fails to reflect the true value that Apple generates in the United States.

The company noted it spent $US50 billion with 9,000 US suppliers in its most recent fiscal year.

The technology sector is one of the biggest potential losers in the proposed $US200 billion tariff list.

Fitness tracker maker Fitbit said it would be hit by tariffs, and chipmaker Intel said the levies could slow down the adoption of 5G networks, the next generation of wireless data technology for phones and other devices.

Austrlaian Associated PressBack to Breaking News

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