U.S.-EU trade negotiations on the horizon

In an interview to the Financial Times, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross hinted at the possibility of negotiations with the European Union as an alternative approach to imposing tariffs on automotive and automotive parts.

On Wednesday, in an interview to the Financial Times, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross suggested that new negotiations with the European Union could be an alternative to imposing tariffs on automotive imports.

The development comes in the wake of U.S. President Donald Trump declaring that imported vehicles and vehicle parts posed a national security threat to the United States but delayed, until November, to impose any tariffs in order to allow for more time for trade negotiations with the European Union.

“One (option) would be to say, ‘I’m just not going to do anything’, the second would be to impose tariffs on some or all (countries) . . .  the third might be some other form of negotiation,” said Ross, while describing the options being considered by Trump.

From Friday, the U.S. has begun imposing tariffs on select EU imports ranging from French wine, British whisky to Spanish olives and cheese.

Dismissing criticism of the step, Ross said, the tariffs were not imposed unilaterally and that the measure was taken with the “full support” of the World Trade Organization.

In relations with trade talks with China, Ross said China was following through “in good faith” on assurances given in October to press ahead with large purchases of U.S. farm products.



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