Tags: Donald Trump | Trump Administration | european union | tariffs | trade war | steel | aluminum

Trump on EU Trade Threat: 'They Can Do Whatever They'd Like'

(C-SPAN)

By    |   Tuesday, 06 March 2018 04:55 PM

President Donald Trump remained committed to imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports Tuesday in the face of European Union retaliation, saying "we have no choice" and "they can do whatever they'd like."

"The United States has been taken advantage of by other countries — both friendly and not so friendly — for many, many decades," Trump said at a joint White House news conference with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven.

"That's not going to happen with me," he added. "We have been mistreated by many.

"I don't blame the countries. I blame our leadership for allowing it to happen."

Trump announced last week he was imposing tariffs of 25 percent on steel imports and 10 percent on aluminum, with formal action expected this week.

The president's plan has been widely attacked by fellow Republicans, economists and other countries — with the European Union vowing to slap duties on such U.S. products as bourbon, blue jeans, orange juice, cranberries, rice, and motorcycles.

The EU also said it would bring a case over the tariffs before the World Trade Organization in Geneva.

President Trump cited EU restrictions and how they impede U.S. exports to the region.

"The European Union has been particularly tough on the United States," he said. "They make it almost impossible for to us do business with them — and yet they sent their cars and everything else back into the United States.

"They can do whatever they'd like.

"But if they do that, then we put a big tax of 25 percent on their cars — and, believe me, they won't be doing it very long.

"The European Union has not treated us well," he added. "It's been a very, very unfair trade situation.

"One of the reasons I was elected was I'm protecting our workers. I'm protecting our companies.

"I'm not going to let that happen," Trump said.

"We're doing tariffs on steel. We cannot lose our steel industry.

"It's a fraction of what it once was, and we can't lose our aluminum industry, also a fraction of what it once was.

"If the European Union takes off some of the horrible barriers that make it impossible for our product to go into there," Trump later posed, "then we can start talking."

Amid fears of a trade war, the president reiterated "trade wars aren't so bad" and said any tariffs would be imposed in a "long, loving way."

"When we're behind on every single country, trade wars aren't so bad," Trump said. "When we're down . . . the trade war hurts them.

"It doesn't hurt us.

"We'll do it in a long, loving way," the president added. "They'll like us better.

"And they will respect us much more."

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President Donald Trump remained committed to imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports Tuesday, saying "we have no choice" and "they can do whatever they'd like."
european union, tariffs, trade war, steel, aluminum
448
2018-55-06
Tuesday, 06 March 2018 04:55 PM
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