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U.S. to restrict tire imports from China       Updated:September 12 09:23

WASHINGTON, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama has decided to impose punitive tariffs on all car and light truck tires from China for three years, the White House announced on Friday.

"The president decided to remedy the clear disruption to the U.S. tire industry based on the facts and the law in this case," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said in a statement.

The tariffs were strongly opposed by U.S. tire distributors and retailers, who said the restrictions would raise prices, hurting cash-strapped consumers.

With tariffs imposed, the biggest hit would be felt by American consumers who buy 50-dollar Chinese-made tires and can't afford U.S. brands that cost upwards of 150 dollars, warned many distributors.

The Chinese government also spoke strongly against the proposed tariffs.

"We hope the U.S. government will refrain from taking action, for the long-term healthy and stable development of U.S.-Chinese relations," Fu Ziying, China's vice commerce minister, said last month.

"The U.S. must stop taking decisions against China, even small ones, without putting forth an explicit trade policy, which we have thus far failed to do," he told Xinhua.

Editor: Anne Tang