Turkey strikes back, taxing $1.8 billion worth of US goods

A man walks in front of a shop in the Turkish border province of Kilis on January 24, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 21 June 2018
0

Turkey strikes back, taxing $1.8 billion worth of US goods

WASHINGTON: Turkey is imposing tariffs on nearly two dozen US products, ranging from cars to sunscreen, to strike back at Washington’s sanctions on imported steel and aluminum.
According to documents filed with the World Trade Organization, Turkey will slap $267 million in tariffs on $1.8 billion worth of products the United States exports to Turkey.
The tariffs, which take effect Thursday, are in retaliation for President Donald Trump’s decision to tax foreign steel and aluminum. The US says the metals imports pose a threat to US national security. The move has enraged traditional US allies such as the European Union, Canada and Turkey.
On Friday, the 28-nation EU will start taxing a range of US imports, including Harley-Davidson motorcycles and cranberries.
“We cannot and will not allow Turkey to be wrongly blamed for America’s economic challenges,” said Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci.
The US tariffs come to $267 million on $1.1 billion in Turkish steel and aluminum shipments to the United States. Turkey is America 32nd-biggest trading partner, according to the Office of the US Trade Representative.


German industry groups warn US on tariffs before Trump-Juncker meeting

Updated 22 July 2018
0

German industry groups warn US on tariffs before Trump-Juncker meeting

  • Washington imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the EU, Canada and Mexico on June 1
  • Trump is threatening to extend them to EU cars and car parts

BERLIN: German industry groups warned on Sunday, before European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker meets US President Donald Trump this week, that tariffs the United States has imposed or is threatening to introduce risk harming America itself.
Citing national security grounds, Washington imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the EU, Canada and Mexico on June 1 and Trump is threatening to extend them to EU cars and car parts. Juncker will discuss trade with Trump at a meeting on Wednesday.
“The tariffs under the guise of national security should be abolished,” Dieter Kempf, head of Germany’s BDI industry association said. Juncker should tell Trump that the United States would harm itself with tariffs on cars and car parts, he told Welt am Sonntag newspaper.
The German auto industry employed more than 118,000 people in the United States and 60 percent of what they produced was exported. “Europe should not let itself be blackmailed and should put in a confident appearance in the United States,” he added.
German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told Deutschlandfunk radio on Sunday he hoped it was still possible to find a solution that was attractive to both sides. “For us, that means we stand by open markets and low tariffs,” he said
He said the possibility of US tariffs on EU cars was very serious and stressed that reductions in international tariffs in the last 40 years and the opening of markets had resulted in major benefits for citizens.
EU officials have tried to lower expectations about what Juncker can achieve, and played down suggestions that he will arrive in Washington with a novel plan to restore good relations.
Altmaier said it was difficult to estimate the impact of any US car tariffs on the German economy, but added: “Tariffs on aluminum and steel had a volume of just over six billion euros. In this case we would be talking about almost ten times that.”
He said he hoped job losses could be avoided but noted that trade between Europe and the United States made up around one third of total global trade.
“You can imagine that if we go down with a cold in the German-American or European-American relationship, many others around us will get pneumonia so it’s highly risky and that’s why we need to end this conflict as quickly as possible.”
Eric Schweitzer, president of the DIHK Chambers of Commerce, told Welt am Sonntag the German economy had for decades counted on open markets and a reliable global trading system but added: “Every day German companies feel the transatlantic rift getting wider.”