Trade: Vestager on trade conflict with USA: One war is enough

Trade: Vestager on trade conflict with USA: One war is enough

The US wants to fight inflation by tying subsidies to companies using US products or producing domestically. The Europeans accuse the Americans of protectionism.

In the dispute between Brussels and Washington over US subsidies worth billions, EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager wants to avoid a trade war at all costs. “I think one war is enough,” Vestager said in Washington, referring to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. It makes much more sense to find solutions than to deepen the conflict. Vestager and other EU representatives met on Monday in the US state of Maryland for the third Trade and Technology Council.

Vestager now emphasized that an important factor in the exchange with the Americans is transparency. However, she also admitted that this would not be enough, for example with regard to e-cars. In addition, the Europeans should also do their homework with a view to green industrial policy. After the talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, she was confident that an agreement would be reached, she said.

The point of contention is a US law to combat inflation. It provides for billions in investments in climate protection. Subsidies and tax credits are tied to companies using US products or manufacturing in the US. The Europeans therefore accuse the USA of protectionism. Last week, after a conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron, President Joe Biden admitted that there were minor flaws in the law. At the same time, the US government had declared that it did not want to make any subsequent changes.

Source: Stern

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