China's state media has taken aim at Apple in recent weeks, accusing the USA titan of allowing illegal apps to proliferate on its platform.
Yet Beijing is not backing down despite insistence from Washington that it put the breaks on a technology development strategy that, according to the US, features unfair trade practices.
The 25 percent duties apply to US$16 billion of goods from each side, including automobiles and metal scrap from the U.S. and Chinese-made factory machinery and electronic components.
"The risk that current trade tensions escalate further with adverse effects on confidence, asset prices and investment is the greatest near-term risk to global growth", International Monetary Fund chief economist Maury Obstfeld told a news conference last month.
Trump has warned that he could tax up to $550 billion in Chinese products, exceeding the US' total imports from China during 2017.
John Neuffer, president of the Semiconductor Industry Association, said the tariffs would hurt USA companies more than Chinese firms, since most semiconductor products imported from China started out as chips fabricated in the United States.
Trump also has accused China of manipulating its currency to combat USA tariffs. They were the first face-to-face U.S.
There is concern that if the tariff exchange continues, China will sooner or later include USA crude oil imports in the list of products to be sold more expensively in the world's second-largest economy. China has threatened that if the USA goes ahead with the next round of tariffs, it will respond with tariffs on US$60 billion worth of USA goods, which will be the first disproportionate response in the exchange.
U.S. Treasury Undersecretary for International Affairs David Malpass and Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen met Wednesday and will meet again on Thursday for the first face-to-face trade discussions since June.
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"We hope the USA can make concerted efforts with China and follow a rational and practical attitude to earnestly seek good results", foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a regular news briefing.
Some commentators also struck a note of caution for China in taking tit-for-tat approach.
Adding to the $34 billion targeted in July, that brings the total two-way trade weighed down by the steep tariffs to $100 billion, and the United States now is considering hitting another $200 billion. In response, the Chinese delegation could this week offer a private pledge not to let the currency weaken further as long as negotiations continue, said Derek Scissors, a China expert at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington.
Ahead of the Washington talks, Chinese state TV mocked Mr. Trump with a sarcastic video posted on YouTube and other social media pages of its worldwide arm, China Global Television Network.
U.S. commerce secretary Wilbur Ross said China would not be able to continue to retaliate at the same pace as the United States, since "we have many more bullets than they do".
The initial list of USA demands presented to China in May included a call for a US$200 billion reduction in America's annual goods trade deficit with China by 2020 - which stood at about US$375 billion previous year - and an end to industrial policies that the USA claims violates global trading rules.
The broadcaster, which airs in more than 100 countries from the United States to Kenya, was rebranded in 2016 as a news channel aiming to "tell China's story" to a foreign audience.