July 26, 2018
A trade spat between the US and China shows no sign of ceasing amid fears that President Donald Trump’s plans to slap 25 percent tariffs on European cars may further add to a full-blown global trade war.
Speaking at a press conference in Geneva, World Trade Organization (WTO) Director General Roberto Azevedo specifically focused on the ongoing trade war between the US and China, which he warned may finally ride roughshod over the world economy.
“The worst-case scenario for the global economy, for the consumer, for everyone on the surface of the Earth, is to have no rules, to have the law of the jungle. […] Investors are going to pull back, the economy is going to lose steam and over time millions of jobs will be lost,” he pointed out.
Warning against “eye-for-an-eye” retaliation, Azevedo explained that “a solution can only be found through high-level discussions and engagement.”
The WTO chief also cautioned Washington against pursuing its protectionist policies, which he predicted may leave the US economically vulnerable.
In this context, he urged all those “who believe that trade is a force for good to speak up.”
Azevedo’s remarks came after Trump’s meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in Washington, where the US and EU agreed to work toward “zero tariffs” on industrial goods, apart from cars.
On Wednesday, Trump accused China of staging a “vicious” attack on US farmers, referring to new tariffs that Beijing slapped on a number of American farm products, such as soy beans, corn, wheat, cotton, rice, beef, pork, poultry, fish, dairy, nuts and vegetables.
China is targeting our farmers, who they know I love & respect, as a way of getting me to continue allowing them to take advantage of the U.S. They are being vicious in what will be their failed attempt. We were being nice…