Germany urges EU’s ‘determined’ response to US tariffs on steel

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… from Press TV, Tehran

Trump once again is making a big splash to take attention off other things

[ Editor’s Note: Well the doo doo has hit the fan. Yesterday’s news had reports of Congressional Republicans in an uproar over higher steel and aluminum prices working their way through into higher product prices for consumers that negates some of the benefits of the tax cuts they worked so hard for.

The White House staff as said to have been working to delay Trump’s announcement, knowing that it could unite Repubs and Dems against it and be a troublesome mid term elections political issue. But Trump pre-empted the staff by making an impromptu press announcement.

He was flippant about trade war concerns also, with his comment that “they are good, and easy to win” which ponders the question of how could he possibly know with his limited education, where he has a lifetime of faking it as a cover.

Not surprisingly the Europeans tried to throw China under the bus, that they are dumping steel so tariffs are fair for them, but not for the EU. We will now get to see if the World Trade Organization works, or is just another empty shell organization like the UN has become.

This will benefit Iran as the EU will not want to lose its pending deals there due to the banking sanctions threats. They may tie their response to both… Jim W. Dean ]

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Republicans in Congress are angry over steel prices going up with tariffs

– First published …  March 02, 2018

Germany has called for “determined” action to counter a proposal by US President Donald Trump to impose sharp tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

Trump proposed new tariffs on imported steel and aluminum as part of his protectionist policies in line with his slogan, “Make America Great Again.”

“It’ll be 25 percent for steel and it’ll be 10 percent for aluminum … and it’ll be for a long time,” Trump said on Thursday. “We’re going to build our steel industry back and our aluminum industry back.”

US and EU relations will go further down hill, and the WTO might be exposed as a paper tiger

This is Trump’s first major step in fulfilling his promise during the 2016 presidential election campaign to protect the US steel industry. The European Union (EU) member states are concerned about the impact of the new tariffs on their economies.

Trump’s proposal was “not at all acceptable,” German daily newspaper Die Welt on Friday quoted Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel as saying.

The EU “must respond with determination to US punitive tariffs that threaten thousands of jobs in Europe,” Gabriel said. There should be “no doubt in Washington” that a response would be forthcoming from Brussels. Gabriel urged Trump to “rethink his announcement.”

During his presidential campaign, Trump claimed that foreign countries were “dumping vast amounts of steel all over the United States, which essentially is killing our steelworkers and steel companies.”

We “do not practice unfair competition with dumping prices,” Gabriel claimed, indirectly putting the blame on the Chinese who are famous for selling cheap material.

Nevertheless, the US and the EU “should do everything possible to avoid an international trade war,” Gabriel warned. Trump responded by saying that “trade wars were good and easy to win.”

Gabriel’s comments were an echo of comments by the chief of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. Juncker complained that the proposed tariffs were a blatant intervention that amounted to protectionism, vowing to act “firmly” against Trump’s proposed tariffs.

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire followed suit, saying Washington should be prepared for a firm joint response if it imposes fresh tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.

In a rare reaction, Roberto Azevedo, director general of the World Trade Organization (WTO), also expressed concern about the proposed tariffs.

“The WTO is clearly concerned at the announcement of US plans for tariffs on steel and aluminum,” he said in a brief statement on Friday. “A trade war is in no one’s interests,” he warned, adding that the potential for escalation was real and the WTO would be monitoring the situation closely.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. After WW2 the industrialists who built the sprawling US steel plants like, Bethlehem Steel, and Rupublic Steel took their talents east to Russia, China and Japan where with American tax payor money they built the most modern foundries the in the world staffed with cheap labor. For over 7 decades facilities in the states were ignored as parent corporatiins refused to spend on modernizing here. So it comes full circle. It is not the fault of any government, or ideology. It was simply greed.

  2. Recall the recent JCPOA vote, Peter it’s only a guess. Mr. Shrimpton might pose it’s something to to with Postwar NAZI International.

  3. Everything is recycled under the sun and even that too if solar panels are a consideration. The tariffs protect a price that is not supported with recycling thus no need for raw materials,fewer customers(their fault) and high energy costs, those huge electrodes use a lot of juice. The local steel mills and aluminum plant use locally produced electrodes but it’s the aluminum plant that does quite a lot of haggling over the price of energy lately.

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