European Commission Vice President Jyrkri Katainen wants trans-Atlantic trade deals to be important
European Commission Vice President Jyrkri Katainen believes that trans-Atlantic trade deals must be kept alive as it could create the world’s biggest economic relationship.
But he fears that the US President will walk away from plans to eliminate tariffs on goods shipped between Europe and America, which would be bad for business.
He said: “We do encourage the new US administration to take another look and consider the benefits of free trade. The world cannot afford protectionism."
However, during his short time in office, Mr Trump has rubbished the planned Trans Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) as it does not come under his “America first” plans.
This has caused grave concern among EU politicians who fear that they will be pushed to the back of the queue in any upcoming deals.
Mr Katainen added: “Free trade agreements make it possible to have a level playing field. The EU still believes in free trade and we are negotiating with 20 different jurisdictions on FTA’s and investment agreement."
There are fears that Mr Trump will walk away from key EU deals
The EU is facing an uphill battle with the new administration as Mr Trump has repeatedly made clear that America will not engage in anything that does not put America first.
In his inauguration speech, Mr Trump said: “From this day forward, it's going to be only America first, America first. Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs will be made to benefit American workers and American families.
“We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our product, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.”
British Prime Minister Theresa May was first to meet President Trump
Mr Kaitainen told Bloomberg that many in the EU worry there is a perception of a lack of growth in Brussels.
He believes this was made worse by the UK’s decision to separate from the EU.
It is of particular concern for Europe after Theresa May made her way to the front of the queue to begin trade talks with the President during their meeting in Washington last week.
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