What does the apparent Trump-EU trade truce mean for China?

26 July, 2018, 13:30 | Author: Shannon Aguilar
  • Trump’s financial aid offer to farmers criticized as tax-funded ‘welfare’

Trump indicated both sides agreed to halt for now tariffs that threatened to devolve into a trade war as negotiations proceed, and said the European Union agreed to import more U.S. soybeans and liquid natural gas.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue says the plan will help a broad number of farmers deal with the cost of "disruptive markets" as USA trading partners have retaliated for President Donald Trump's tariffs on imported goods.

President Trump struck a trade deal Wednesday with the European Union, reaping significant concessions as top E.U. officials moved to avoid an escalating tariff war with the USA, according to early reports.

Amid turbulent, transatlantic trade relations, sparked by United States tariffs on EU steel and aluminium, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker will try and calm things down in Washington.

The Trump administration will reportedly today announce up to US$12 billion in emergency relief for farmers hurt by the trade war, the New York Times reported.

Beijing imposed tariffs on $34 billion worth of USA products, including soybeans, earlier this month. China made $517 Billion on us a year ago, ' the president added.

"The answer to America First can only be: Europe United", he said.

Mark Martinson, who raises crops and cattle in north-central North Dakota and is president of the US Durum Growers Association, said the $12 billion figure "sounds huge" but there are many farmers in need.

President Trump seems determined to stick with his proposed 25 percent tariff on all imported vehicles, despite opposition from advisers, the auto industry, and others within the Republican party, reports The Washington Post. Officials said the direct payments could help producers of soybeans, which have been hit hard by retaliation to the Trump tariffs, along with sorghum, corn, wheat, cotton, dairy and farmers raising hogs.

G20 ministers call for greater dialogue on trade tensions
G20 ministers call for greater dialogue on trade tensions

Hours later, he and Juncker came out to the White House Rose Garden for an impromtu press conference - aides were still setting things up when reporters were summoned for a almost hourlong wait - to announce what amounted to a trade relations peace pact between the United States and Europe.

The other would be a free trade agreement between the US and European Union covering industrial goods, which would amount to a narrower version of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership pursued by the Obama administration, the European official said. The administration clobbers farmers with an unnecessary trade war then attempts to assuage them with taxpayer handouts.

Mr Trump promised to have the back of every American farmer and rancher, and he knows the importance of keeping our rural economy strong, he said. "We can also do stupid".

In the end, what Trump and Juncker outlined Wednesday sounds more like a handshake deal that could lead to a formal deal-but also might not. If you want to scare Beijing into thinking twice about stealing IP, you'll get further faster with a joint U.S. -EU effort than by going it alone.

The response to the announcement was mixed, with many legislators criticizing the plan, calling it "welfare for farmers", and farm groups pleading for a more lasting solution.

Soybean farmers in Midwestern states, an important group of Trump's voters, were affected by the retaliatory measures imposed by China as a response to U.S. fresh tariffs. The U.S. and European Union will work together to reform the World Trade Organization, Trump said.

"I think we have to talk each to another and not at another and that's what we do today", he said, before saying he hopes they could focus on reducing, not increasing, tariffs. "This announcement is substantial but we can not overstate the dire consequences that farmers and ranchers are facing in relation to lost export markets".

Still, the deal announced Wednesday with the European Union is an encouraging sign that America's trade partners may be able to placate the Trump administration with offers to buy more US goods, averting a trade war that the International Monetary Fund has warned may undermine the strongest global upswing in years.

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