European Union metals tariffs retaliation to start June 22

European Union metals tariffs retaliation to start June 22

The European Union slapped revenge tariffs on iconic U.S. products including bourbon, jeans and motorcycles on Friday in its opening salvo in a trade war with President Donald Trump.

The tariffs, which will hit American products including motorcycles and denim, are a response to Trump administration tariffs on steel and aluminum exports from Europe.

This report comes after the European Commission announced it approved initial retaliatory tariffs on USA exports worth €2.8 billion ($3.2 billion).

She called the European Union response proportionate and in line with World Trade Organization rules and said that they would be removed if Washington removed its metal tariffs.

Brussels first drew up the list in March when Trump initially floated the 25 per cent tariffs on steel imports and 10 per cent on aluminum, which also target Canada, Mexico and other close allies. Europeans claim that is simply protectionism and breaks global trade rules.

Luxury carmakers Daimler and BMW joined American farmers and Chinese solar panel and steel makers among the first casualties in what looks set to become a bitter trade war on a global scale of a kind not seen since the 1930s.

India raised tariffs on a slew of items in retaliation for the United States imposing higher levies on some products shipped from the South Asian nation, echoing steps taken by China, the European Union and other trading partners. The big trade conflagration, however, is with China.

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In two weeks, the USA is due to start taxing $US34 billion in Chinese goods.

China has said it would impose additional tariffs on 659 US goods, with duties on 545 to kick in on July 6, after Trump said Washington would levy tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese products. Trump is also looking at new tariffs on auto imports, opening a new front in the trade war. The EU does not rely on the U.S.as a market for its steel exports as much as Canada or Mexico, which are also being hit by the USA tariffs and stand to lose more.

"We have a trade war - and it's an escalating trade war", SEB chief economist Robert Bergqvist told AFP in an interview.

"We are already beginning to see some increased regulatory scrutiny against US companies operating in the market, whether it is increased Customs enforcement, local emissions inspections at our companies' factories or stricter enforcement of the advertising law", said Mr Jake Parker, vice-president of China operations for the US-China Business Council in Beijing.

Mr Trump ran for the presidency on a vow to topple seven decades of American policy that had favoured ever-freer trade among nations. Which means even if we are not exporting to the United States directly, we may as well be exporting indirectly by sending our primary products which are commodities and raw materials indirectly to the to the United States through Europe, India or China.

It had previously registered the move with the World Trade Organization (WTO).

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