EU's Tusk warns Trump trade wars can lead to 'hot conflicts'

Cornelia Mascio
Luglio 16, 2018

President Trump and the U.S. Trade Representative's Office have said the China tariffs are meant to force that burgeoning country to change its trade policies and do more to prevent the theft of U.S. technology and intellectual property.

The trade war between the United States and China officially launched July 6, when Trump slapped duties on $34 million worth of mostly industrial Chinese goods, and Beijing responded by posting tariffs on an equal amount of American imports.

"The actions taken by the President are wholly legitimate and fully justified as a matter of USA law and worldwide trade rules. Instead of working with us to address a common problem, some of our trading partners have elected to respond with retaliatory tariffs created to punish American workers, farmers and companies", Mr. Lighthizer said.

"It is the common duty of Europe and China, but also America and Russian Federation, not to destroy (the global trade order) but to improve it, not to start trade wars which turned into hot conflicts so often in our history", Tusk said in Beijing.

It came at a time when China and the European Union have separate disputes with US President Donald Trump's administration on areas including trade, security and other global affairs and governance.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has called that assertion absurd.

The Trump administration announced a possible second round of tariff hikes this week targeting a $200 billion list of thousands of Chinese products. Trump himself threatened to take action against the WTO earlier this month after the Axios news agency reported that his administration had drafted legislation to withdraw the US from the organization, a move the president repeatedly told advisers he was considering. Both sides also agreed to set up a working group to reform the beleaguered World Trade Organization, a move that Tusk called on Trump, Putin and China to embrace "to prevent conflict and chaos".

Freeland has insisted that Canada introduced stronger safeguards on steel well before the us imposed the tariffs.

On this front, Ottawa feels it has more work to do.

The US government said that Trump's actions on trade in aluminum and steel was to protect the United States' national security interests.

The latest USA tariffs were announced days after China retaliated for an earlier round of US import taxes of up to 25 percent on items worth approximately $50 billion. He argues that this justifies the tariffs under worldwide rules, and contends that the other countries' retaliation is illegal because they did not go through the WTO. Southern Ontario is the centre of Canada's auto industry, with plants from American and overseas auto makers, numerous parts manufacturers and heavy integration with US assemblies on the other side of the border.

Canada has argued that the national security rationale was merely an excuse the Trump administration came up with to impose tariffs for reasons of pure protectionism.

David MacNaughton, Canada's ambassador to the US, is scheduled to testify Thursday at the hearings in Washington.

Altre relazioniGrafFiotech

Discuti questo articolo

Segui i nostri GIORNALE