Following President Donald Trump's decision to place tariffs on steel and aluminum from China, the customs tariff commission of the State Council retaliated with tariffs on numerous American goods, stoking fears of a global trade war.
The White House responded to China's move as "unfair" on Monday.
President Donald Trump's administration had said its duties were aimed at steel and aluminium imports that it deemed a threat to US national security, but China's Commerce Ministry called that reasoning an "abuse" of World Trade Organisation (WTO) guidelines.
The US measures "are directed only at a few countries, seriously violating the principle of non-discrimination as a cornerstone of the multilateral trading system, which seriously infringed the interests of the Chinese side," said a statement on the Commerce Ministry website.
Beijing warned last month that tariffs were under consideration for a host of goods including wine, nuts, and aluminum.
A White House spokesperson said Monday that China's response is "unfair" and harms America's national security.
"China's subsidisation and continued overcapacity is the root cause" of what deputy White House spokeswoman Lindsay Walters called a crisis affecting steel.
"Instead of targeting fairly traded US exports, China needs to stop its unfair trading practices, which are harming US national security and distorting global markets," she said.