‘No more!’: Trump threatens EU with car tariffs as war of words over trade escalates

‘No more!’: Trump threatens EU with car tariffs as war of words over trade escalates

US President Donald Trump says he will impose a tax on European car imports if the EU raises tariffs on incoming American goods, accusing his predecessors of leaving the US hostage to “very stupid” trade deals.

“If the E.U. wants to further increase their already massive tariffs and barriers on U.S. companies doing business there, we will simply apply a Tax on their Cars which freely pour into the U.S. They make it impossible for our cars (and more) to sell there. Big trade imbalance!” Trump tweeted on Saturday. The tweet came after news media reported that Brussels was considering putting a 25 percent tariff on US imports, and European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker said they would target “Harley-Davidson, bourbon and blue jeans.”

The European response was in retaliation to Trump’s Thursday announcement that the US would impose an import tax of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum starting from next week. So far, this has been the only concrete step, though. On Friday, Trump tweeted that “trade wars are good, and easy to win,” as the US is locked in disadvantageous deals and stands to lose less from a ramping up of financial barriers.

READ MORE: ‘Trade wars are good’: Trump defends tit-for-tat tariffs

“The United States has an $800 Billion Dollar Yearly Trade Deficit because of our ‘very stupid’ trade deals and policies. Our jobs and wealth are being given to other countries that have taken advantage of us for years. They laugh at what fools our leaders have been. No more!” Trump wrote on Saturday.

Trump’s aversion to German car imports had manifested before. Last year, he called German car imports, valued at $23 billion in 2017, terrible, and chided European carmakers for failing to open manufacturing plants on US territory.

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