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TTIP in crisis: The EU has warned Donald Trump "trade is not a game"
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) has hit a major stumbling block sparking fears it could be scrapped.
EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom attacked the US president for his attitude towards the controversial trade deal.
Lengthy TTIP negotiations are on ice following the election of Donald Trump, who campaigned on a protectionist agenda and has been highly critical of TTIP.
Some tend to see trade as a game – I win, you lose. We don’t see it like that
EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom
Ms Malmstrom was speaking in Canada where she is promoting the recently signed EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) deal.
She said: “Some tend to see trade as a game – I win, you lose.
“We don’t see it like that. We see a trade agreement as, I win, you win.”
In a warning shot, Ms Malmstrom said the Trump administration’s threats to hit imported goods with a potential border tax would hit the poor.
She said: “We do know the consequence of turning away from trade.
“We know that it will raise prices, hitting the poorest hardest of all.
"We do not agree with those who think the answer is to raise barriers.
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EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said the EU does not view trade as a game
Donald Trump has already scrapped the Trans-Pacific Partnership
“In Europe which has long divided itself by walls and borders, we know those divisions bring anything but freedom and prosperity.
“We know that unplugging from the global grid is not an option. It would kill jobs, not create them."
The White House is said to be holding out for a series of bi-lateral trade deals instead of the TTIP deal.
Barack Obama and Angela Merkel pushed for the TTIP deal
Mr Trump has already scrapped the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) which was signed by 12 countries including Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Mexico.
Within days of taking the White House in January, Mr Trump vowed to put “America First”.
He said: "From this day forward it is only going to be America first. Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs will be made to benefit American workers and American families.
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"We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our product, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.”
TTIP negotiations started in February 2014 with Mr Trump throughout his election campaign saying he would bin the beleaguered deal.
Mr Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama and Angela Merkel pushed for the deal, with the German Chancellor saying the agreement was “absolutely in Europe’s interests”.