The grim reality facing Australia if we get into a full-blown trade war with China: The price of most consumer items would DOUBLE

This is vastly overegged.  It overlooks that most of the things we get from China could be sourced from elsewhere in Asia at little additional cost. Vietnam, for instance, has lower wage costs than China and has a rapidly expanding manufacturing sector

And Korea already sends us heaps.  Their labour costs are high but that is largely  counteracted by their high degree of automation. Expanding their offerings to us would be easy

Australians would be paying double the price for common imported consumer goods if Prime Minister Scott Morrison matched China's trade tariffs.

Without China, Australians would miss out on having affordable Apple iPhones, $49 air fryers from Kmart and even brand new SUVs for $20,000. 

China, Australia's biggest trading partner, is the largest buyer of iron ore exports and is by far the largest supplier of imports.

The Communist power has been punishing Australia with punitive 80 per cent tariffs on barley and 200 per cent import taxes on wine, as the diplomatic spat over coronavirus extends into the eighth month.

Leading trade expert Professor Tim Harcourt, however, said Australian consumers would be the real victims if Australia retaliated by slapping import taxes on Chinese goods.

'I don't think it's a real good idea to get a tit-for-tat exchange because that could only be worse,' he told Daily Mail Australia.

Little more than three decades ago, imported electronic goods sold in Australia incurred 45 per cent tariffs.

Should Australia retaliate against China - with 80 per cent tariffs on imports - common consumer goods would almost double in price.

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