President Donald Trump may have just scored a huge victory in the “trade war” with Europe after German officials hinted that they may drop auto tariffs.
One of the major problems that Trump has complained about is the overprotective tariffs imposed on goods shipped into the U.S. from foreign countries and our goods shipped there. The extra tariff (a tax) on items both going into and out of other countries has, Trump says, put the U.S. at a great disadvantage for decades. He has made it a goal to level the playing field.
But if the Germans have decided to end auto tariffs, that would be a huge victory for the U.S. import/export sectors.
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And that may be just what the German’s are planning, if a report at the U.K. Express is right.
The German Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Peter Altmaier, told Austrian public broadcaster ORF on Friday that Germany is willing to come to the table to ease trade tensions with the US.
Mr Altmaier said: “We are ready to talk about low, equal duties on cars.
“This would be the best solution for everyone.”
Mr Altmaier’s surprise comments came after an EU trade ministers meeting in Innsbruck.
US duty on imports from the EU is only 2.5 percent, resulting in a trade deficit for the US.
Trump has been intent on forcing our trading partners to end or at least reduce tariffs.
The paper goes on:
President Trump previously threatened to slap tariffs on German cars, starting a trade war with EU, unless the bloc changed their tariffs.
He said: “The European Union is possibly as bad as China, only smaller.
“They send a Mercedes in, we can’t send our cars in.”
The tough talk seems to have worked wonders with the EU, who are now scrambling to resolve the issue.
EU Trade Chief Cecilia Malmström warned yesterday American tariffs on European cars “could absolutely happen” and she is “waiting for US reactions” on an EU proposal.
She said trade experts from both sides will hold discussions “later this month” and meet with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer at the end of November to try and avoid an escalation.
Well, if this does come to pass, this would be a huge trade victory for a president that every liberal said would “tank the U.S. economy.”
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.
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