On Wednesday, the European Commission may decide on EU response measures for trade restrictions announced last week by the United States – the spokesman for the Brussels body announced on Monday.
Margaritis Skinner announced at the organization’s regular daily press that “swift, decisive and proportionate” measures could be adopted at Wednesday’s committee meeting if they find that the US actions announced are hurting European interests.
In response to a journalist question, the spokesman underlined that the EU is not a zero-sum game for trade policy with its winners and losers. “Trade should be beneficial to all parties,” he said.
At the same time, he said, “We can not put our heads in the sand. When one takes unilateral and unfair steps that put thousands of jobs at risk in Europe, we must act decisively, but strictly in accordance with the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO).”
However, this is not about escalating the conflict, but merely the protection of European interests, he said.
He added that the global overcapacity in the steel and aluminum sectors is the fundamental problem that should be tackled at the root.
US President Donald Trump announced Thursday that a 25 percent import duty will be introduced for steel and 10 percent for aluminum intake.
According to some news, the EU may impose a 25 percent import duty for about US $ 3 billion in US products. Several days ago, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, spoke about raising the Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the Levi’s farmer clothing manufacturers and the bourbon whiskey duty. The centers of the companies concerned are located in important Republican-led states, Harley-Davidson’s headquarters are in Wisconsin, and bourbon is made mainly in Kentucky, Tennessee. Paul Ryan, the Republican President of the Chamber of Deputies, joined the legislature from Wisconsin, Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican leader from Kentucky.
Trump on Saturday threatened the EU to “levy taxes on cars manufactured in Europe” if Brussels actually take retaliatory measures.