Top trade officials from the United States and the European Union reached no breakthrough earlier this week in Brussels for laying out a pact that would deliver on an earlier agreement to avert a trans-Atlantic economic fight by slashing tariffs and boosting commerce.
U.S. trade officials said they hope to reach an agreement with the E.U. on lifting some technical barriers to trade by November, according to The Wall Street Journal.
In July, President Donald Trump and E.U. Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said they would begin negotiations “intended to achieve ‘zero tariffs’ and ‘zero subsidies’ on non-automotive industrial goods in an effort to avert a possible trade war,” according to the Associated Press.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and E.U. Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom “will meet again this month, and in November, ‘to finalize outcomes in a number of areas.’ ”
Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland met with Lighthizer in Washington on Tuesday “to discuss talks to renew the NAFTA trade pact,” a Canadian government official told the AP.
On Monday, China “promised retaliation” if President Trump imposes additional tariffs, “raising the risk Beijing might target operations of American companies as it runs out of imports for penalties,” according to the AP.
The threat from Beijing “came after Trump said Friday he was considering extending penalties to an additional $267 billion of Chinese products in their battle over Beijing’s technology policy.”
“If the United States insists on imposing another round of tariffs on Chinese products, China will definitely take countermeasures to safeguard its legitimate rights and interests,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said.