Trump will target EU with trade sanctions if re-elected, insiders say
If Donald Trump is re-elected US president in November, he will confront the European Union, according to insiders speaking to Bloomberg. An across-the-board 10 per cent import tariff on European products could be on the table.
Global nerves are fraying over the prospect of Trump's possible second term. Insiders have suggested that the president's approach will be more strategic and less erratic than in his first term, but that does not mean a more moderate stance.
Confidential discussions have revealed Trump's plans for trade policy, Bloomberg reports. He is apparently keen to express his frustration with the EU by imposing a general import tariff of 10 per cent on European products, similar to that imposed on goods from China. US-EU relations were already strained during Trump's first term after he imposed tariffs on European steel and aluminium - a dispute that remains unresolved.
Trump is reportedly unhappy with Europe's lack of assertive policy towards China, such as its import tariffs and restrictions on Chinese strategic investments. His broader aim is to boost trade in American products. "Trump is using trade and tariffs as a negotiating tactic to get countries to act in the US interest," says his economic adviser Stephen Moore.
"Trump is using trade and tariffs as a negotiating tactic to get countries to act in the US interest"
According to a spokesperson, Trump "has made it clear that he will use every tool at his disposal to protect American workers". He will not allow other nations to "steal our jobs or destroy our industries".
European tax rules
Trump may even consider banning TikTok and banning imports of Chinese electric vehicles, even if they are assembled in other locations such as Europe.
He also has plans to protect American companies from European tax rules on the digital economy. Companies such as Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple and Netflix are seen as quintessentially American businesses that must be protected at all costs.
© PHOTO KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP