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    Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May delivers a speech at Mansion House, in London, Friday, March 2, 2018

    Labour Leader Says PM May 'Too Weak to Stand Up' to US Amid Tariff Row

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    President Trump’s decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Europe, Canada and Mexico have prompted condemnation by Washington's allies, who have been threatening retaliatory levies on US goods, and heightened chances of a trade war.

    The leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, has accused Prime Minister Theresa May of trying to mollify the US president amid an ongoing dispute over US trade levies.

    Corbyn has also slammed what he described as the Tory government’s “timid response” to Washington’s move and its being “too weak to stand up to the powerful.”

    When speaking at an upcoming trade union conference in Brighton, Jeremy Corbyn, who believes that the US tariffs will hurt workers in the United States and around the world by sparking tit-for-tat retaliation, is expected to accuse the prime minister of trying to “appease Donald Trump in the hope of getting a race-to-the-bottom trade deal with the US.”

    This harsh criticism comes less than a week before Theresa May and Donald Trump are scheduled to meet at the G7 summit in Canada at a time when Trump’s decision to impose a 25 percent tariff on European steel and a 10 percent levy on European aluminum has pushed the US and the EU to the brink of an all-out trade war.

    Concerned by Washington’s move, Brussels has brought the matter before the World Trade Organization and has threatened retaliation.
    Theresa May has criticized Trump's decision as “unjustified” and will work with the EU to seek exemptions from the US tariffs.

    “I am deeply disappointed at the unjustified decision by the US to apply tariffs to EU steel and aluminum imports,” May was quoted by the Independent as saying during a 30-minute telephone linkup with Trump.

    “The US, EU and UK are close allies and have always promoted values of open and fair trade across the world. Our steel and aluminum industries are hugely important to the UK, but they also contribute to US industry including in defense projects which bolster US national security,” she added.

    President Trump’s decision to impose steep tariffs on European steel and aluminum imports is widely seen as a serious blow to hopes of a post-Brexit trade deal between London and Washington with International Trade Secretary Liam Fox describing the move as “patently absurd,” the newspaper wrote.

    READ MORE: What Does the Future Hold for US and Canada in the Wake of Steel Tariffs?

    The EU, Mexico and Canada have all set out plans for retaliatory tariffs on US goods.

    The European Union has responded to the US move with its own list of tariffs on American goods ranging from Harley-Davidson motorcycles to bourbon.

    Canada plans to impose a 25 percent levy on about $13 billion worth of US exports starting July 1.

    Related:

    Analysts Explain Possible Outcome of US Tariffs Policy: 'Workers Will Lose'
    US Tariffs Policy Could Ignite 'Much Broader Trade War' - Analyst
    G7 Vows to Fight US Steel, Aluminum Tariffs
    Tags:
    US import tariffs, Labour leader, criticism, EU, World Trade Organization (WTO), Jeremy Corbyn, Donald Trump, Theresa May, United Kingdom
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