European Union to respond to any USA auto tariff move

23 Juin, 2018, 22:42 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • US stock markets are feeling the heat as tensions over trade between the US and China seem closer to a boil

And on Friday, Trump threatened to slap tariffs of 20pc on European Union auto imports, sending shares in Fiat Chrysler, Daimler and BMW sharply lower.

A transatlantic trade battle could open a second front in a global trade war, with much at stake: The United States and the European Union trade just over €1 trillion ($1.2 trillion) in goods and services each year.

The United States has granted exemptions to some products from Japan and four other countries from its additional tariffs on steel imports, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. He argues the glut of steel and aluminium products entering the United States also pose a security threat. "Any attempt to increase taxes on German cars would have a larger effect on BMW and Mercedes, and a lower effect on Volkswagen, as most of the sales of the premium brands correspond to imported models (63% for Mercedes and 64% for BMW)".

The decision to expand the Trump administration's trade disputes to foreign auto manufacturers has come under fire from some in the US Congress, as well as many business lobby groups.

Auto industry experts say such tariffs could negatively impact the USA economy, as well as Europe's.

Shares of General Motors Co. and other US automakers gave back earlier gains.

German automotive stocks fell after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to impose a 20 percent tariff on all European vehicle imports into the U.S.

He said Thursday that the Commerce Department hopes to complete the investigation by the end of July or August.

Brussels imposed the raft of duties on 2.8 billion euros (US$3.3 billion) of USA products in a tit-for-tat response to Trump's decision to slap stiff tariffs on European steel and aluminum exports.

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While Germany imported the fifth-most vehicles into the US last year, the home of Europe's biggest economy punches above its weight in attracting Trump's ire.

The German auto industry supports talks to reduce auto tariffs between the US and European Union, but only as part of a larger trade negotiation.

Addressing media at the conclusion of the recent G7 summit in Canada's Quebec City, Trump had singled out India, accusing it of charging 100% tariff on some U.S. goods. Tariffs for those materials now stand at 25% in a move to protect local producers.

"We support free and fair trade and hope for a quick resolution to the issue".

"There is evidence suggesting that, for decades, imports from overseas have eroded our domestic auto industry", Ross said in his May statement.

Sales to the US fell 10 percent to 494,000 vehicles, while Germany automakers produced 804,000 vehicles in the United States previous year. Automotive News data shows about 7.2 percent of vehicles sold in the United States through May were assembled in Europe. He told automakers at a White House meeting in May that he was planning tariffs on some imported vehicles.

The tariff proposal has drawn sharp condemnation from Republican lawmakers and business groups.

Trump had announced plans for tariffs on foreign steel and aluminium in March, justifying them on national security grounds.

In 2017, the U.S. accounted for about 15% of worldwide Mercedes-Benz and BMW brand sales.

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