19:54 GMT +318 July 2018
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    President Donald Trump meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, April 27, 2018, in Washington

    Merkel: EU Ready to Discuss Tariffs With US, May Take Retaliatory Measures

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    German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that Berlin was committed to the global trade order and underlined the country's adherence to the rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

    According to Merkel, Europe is ready to discuss the issue of import tariffs with the United States, but it also reserves the right to take retaliatory measures against Washington. 

    "We are ready to talk with the US, we must try to reach an agreement, otherwise we will have to take measures, as we did in connection with the steel and aluminum duties," she said.

    Merkel also noted that Europe was concerned about a possible trade war between Washington and Beijing.

    "The consequences of imposing duties by the US and China will be felt by all parties, including German companies," the chancellor added.

    READ MORE: EU Warns US Against Car Tariffs, Response Could Affect $294 Bln in US Exports

    Merkel's statement comes amid a major row between the transatlantic partners over trade issues. The threat of a looming trade war emerged when the United States in March imposed a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports. Although the tariffs on Canada, Mexico and the European Union, as well as several other states, had initially been suspended, Washington eventually removed the exemption on May 31.

    The EU heavily criticized Washington's move and in response, unanimously approved a set of retaliatory tariffs against a variety of US products, including whiskey and motorcycles.

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