07:29 GMT +319 October 2019
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    US President Donald Trump speaks with Scott Sauritch, the president of the United Steelworkers Union local 2227, prior to signing new tariffs measure on steel and aluminum imports.

    US-EU 'Spiral of Protectionism' Must Be Prevented - German Industry Groups

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    Four German industry organizations cautioned against a "spiral of protectionism" after US President Donal Trump imposed steel and aluminum tariffs, and called on the government and the European Union to remain devoted to free trade.

    The BDA employers association, BDI industry group, DIHK trade group, and German Confederation of Skilled Crafts (ZDH) have rung the alarm about German national policy issues after a meeting in Munich.

    "German industry is extremely concerned about the decision of the U.S. government to imposed far-reaching punitive tariffs. To prevent a spiral of protectionism, Germany, and the European Union must continue to stand up the global world trade system," the groups said in a joint statement.

    Germany is worried about US President Donald Trump's decision to impose tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum, German government deputy spokesman Georg Streiter said.

    "We are concerned about this decision… The government rejects the introduction of unilateral penalty tariffs, we consider them illegal," Streiter told a briefing.

    The statement follows the March 1 Trump's decision to impose a 25-percent tariff on US imports of steel and a 10-percent tariff on aluminum for an indefinite period of time.

    READ MORE: US Violates WTO Rules By Introducing Tariffs — German Economy Ministry

    The tariffs go into effect in 15 days and will initially exclude Canada and Mexico.

    Not only Germans are furious with the US imposed tariffs, China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that the US was using the "wrong remedy" to tackle trade disputes and threatened retaliation.

    Trump's decision sparked a major concern among the world's aluminum and steel exporters, prompting a quick verbal response from the European Commission as well. The EU said that it would prepare retaliatory measures on the US' proposed duties on steel and aluminum imports.


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