Trade dispute with the US: Europe strikes back

In the ongoing trade dispute with the US the EU has raised import tariffs for a number of US goods. Tariffs for products like whisky, jeans and motorbikes were increased in retaliation for Donald Trump's import duties on European steel and aluminium products. Commentators support the move, even voicing hopes that the row will ultimately leave the EU in a better position.

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De Morgen (BE) /

The only antidote for megalomania

Europe must stand strong, economics professor Paul De Grauwe demands in De Morgen:

“The European counter-measures are key to supporting the political powers in America which are fighting Trump's protectionism tooth and nail. Without European countermeasures these American political powers would have no bite and Trump would win the battle. ... Trump is threatening to start a trade war with the whole world. There's no way he can win. He just can't see this because he is blinded by his own megalomania. The European (and Chinese) counter-measures might just open his eyes.”

Kristeligt Dagblad (DK) /

Trump could unite Europe

Kristeligt Dagblad hopes that the trade war and the anti-EU stance of the US president will turn out to have a silver lining - and lead to a united Europe with a shared constitution, like that penned in the US in 1787 for the first 13 states:

“If Trump continues the way he's going, Europe will be forced to take a stand on what we really want from the EU. There's no doubt that if the EU wants to continue to be an influential and globally recognised entity, we need a constitution to unite Europe. In this respect it might be Donald Trump who brings Europe together. ”