Published: Fri, June 22, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

European Union slaps retaliatory tariffs on U.S. as trade war rattles markets

European Union slaps retaliatory tariffs on U.S. as trade war rattles markets

Trump has also imposed tariffs on other trade partners as well, slapping another 25 per cent tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods last week.

However, many lawmakers have expressed concerns that the tariffs will escalate into a trade war that will ultimately hurt American interests.

The majority of United States goods targeted by the European Union, such as tobacco, Harley Davidson motorcycles, cranberries and peanut butter, will now carry a tariff of 25%. It is a $241 million measure that matches the amount of steel and aluminum import duty expected to be collected from India by the United States after the Trump administration imposed the measures earlier this year.

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The possibility of such a war has been in focus after US President Trump announced tariffs on Chinese goods and China retaliated with tariffs on most agricultural imports from the US.

Juncker said yesterday that the U.S. decision to impose tariffs "goes against all logic and history".

The new duties have been imposed as tensions over trade continued to grow between the U.S. and China.

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"The Irish whiskey industry has been a major beneficiary of global free trade and EU-led free trade agreements". But in the current politically charged climate, a trade war is now a reality, as the United States decided in March to adopt an aggressive protectionist policy to correct what the Trump administration believes is a crippling trade deficit between the US and several major trading partners.

Although there has been no record of talks between the two countries since a deal to negotiate a reduction in America's trade deficit with China fell apart, some political analysts in the United States believe Trump may pull away from the tariffs before July 6. "He is using his "irrationality" as a tactic and he is trying to confuse us", said Chen Fengying, an economics expert at state-backed China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations.

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. "We don't want to do anything that would harm consumers", he said yesterday.

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