Next week EU negotiators come to the US to discus trade. Trump set the tone for the meeting in a Tweet blasting the EU.
Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom will travel to Washington on July 25 with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, with the latter due to hold talks focused on trade with U.S. President Donald Trump.
The United States imposed tariffs on EU steel and aluminum on June 1 and Trump is threatening to extend them to EU cars and car parts.
Trump's top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, said on Wednesday he expected Juncker to come with a significant trade offer. EU officials have downplayed suggestions Juncker will arrive with a novel plan to restore good relations.
Some reports have said that a multilateral deal to remove car tariffs was one idea put forward. Malmstrom on Thursday questioned the viability of such a plan and also said a bilateral deal with the United States to scrap car tariffs could only be done if part of a broader trade agreement.
"The aim of President Juncker's visit is to try to establish a good relations, try to see how we can de-escalate the situation, avoiding it going further and see if there is a forum where we can discuss these issues," Malmstrom said.
"We don't go there to negotiate anything," she added.
Rather than discuss the issues, the EU negotiators want to meet Trump to see if they can agree to a later forum to discuss the issues.
One of the fundamental flaws of the EU is the trade commissioner cannot really negotiate a new trade deal with the US. Every nation in the EU has a say. That is why it took Canada a decade to work out a deal.
The UK desperately needs to escape such madness.
In regards to the $5 billion fine, Trump is correct. It's outrageous. So the stage is set for a very contentious meeting.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock