Wilbur Ross cites unsatisfactory progress in trade talks with EU

October 19, 2018

Editor’s note: The US should not accept just any deal. The EU trade surplus with $442B last year, the biggest surplus of any economic region on the globe. If we don’t impact the trade imbalance, tweaking certain rules will not be worth the time to negotiate.

BRUSSELS — Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Wednesday that President Donald Trump wanted quick results from trade talks with the European Union and warned that progress was unsatisfactory.

[Emre Peker | October 17, 2018 | MarketWatch]

“We really need tangible progress, our president’s patience is not unlimited,” Ross said during a press briefing in Brussels, a day after meeting European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom in the EU’s capital. He said the U.S. stressed “the need for speed and for getting to near-term deliverables.”

Ross’s remarks came just hours after Malmstrom blamed Washington for not engaging with the EU to establish the framework of a trade pact.

The fighting words by Ross and Malmstrom highlight the difficulty of clinching any U.S.-EU trade deal less than three months after Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker agreed to slash tariffs and regulatory barriers to trade. They also raise the risk of U.S. tariffs on European car exporters, which the White House pledged to withhold as long as negotiations continue.

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