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The Europeans are holding up against Trump. Good. Now you have to prove that you can write fairer rules for global trade than the US.

Trade dispute: Yes to free trade – but please don't

The Europeans are holding up against Trump. Good. Now you have to prove that you can write fairer rules for global trade than the US.

Trade dispute: Yes to free trade – but please don't
The Europeans are holding up against Trump. Good. Now you have to prove that you can write fairer rules for global trade than US. June 12th, 2018, 9:17 Uhr28 comments

Are we Europeans jointly conducting a trade war against unpredictable American president? Since Donald Trump has just stirred up world politics with a small tweet on weekend, and now a reciprocal increase in American and European tariffs is becoming more and more likely, this issue is driving many commentators around and that for good Reason. Finally, re is so mancherorten in EU that Trump's attacks hit German steel industry. And especially in sourn Europe, where it has long been seen with suspicion, how much EU monetary policy has used in past of German economy, one observes with grin that next duties will probably meet BMW and Daimler.

You can find that annoying. Or understandably: if re were still D-mark, it would have long since been upgraded and refore German products abroad would automatically be much more expensive – even in intra-European countries. That would hit German carmakers same way. Neverless, one should not blame little loss of pleasure, especially as it has remained so far.

The EU is a blessing!

In fact, Italians, Greeks and French show solidarity with Germany. And that is also in EU. Or in or words: for Federal Republic, EU, with all its institutions and procedures, is just a real blessing. It does not only force European governments to vote again and again. It also helps to negotiate (officially) Brussels for all EU members with Washington. It is EU which, in response to Trump, levies import duties on American products. Trump has never understood and grossly underestimated this degree of European integration – and so far he has achieved one thing in particular: he has made Europeans more ambitious, at least in trade policy. And even in areas that are currently well below public perception threshold.

Next Thursday you will be able to experience this in Bundestag. Then political groups discuss JEFTA. The European Commission has negotiated this new agreement with Japan. At end of month, Council of Ministers, EU governments, wants to give it ir okay in Brussels. And that is not enough: furr agreements with States of South America and Mexico, with Vietnam and Singapore are being negotiated with high pressure or are almost ready. So silently and quietly, EU is creating a network of rules around a world from which Americans are just saying goodbye.

The EU must fight for fair globalization

That is, basically, good and proper – and answer that Europe trumps should give America: you can believe that global rules are from yesterday. We see it differently. We act differently. and or important parts of world obviously too.

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Unfortunately, only one thing is wrong in EU, and that has to do with self-image, which is something like: "We are good guys." Just because Trump does things wrong, we will, EU, will not automatically become a fighter for a just and environmentally friendly globalization. JEFTA also shows exemplary: when EU Commission prepared content of this Treaty, it did not speak to a single trade unionist, to any association of small and medium-sized enterprises, but 190 representatives of corporations and large business associations. This was result of a study by NGO LobbyControl, which asked European Commission. The consequences are sad: JEFTA is free of binding rules for protection of environment. And just because Greens and left have insisted on it, it is debated in Bundestag at all.

Anyone who criticises free trade agreements is considered a Trump fan

This is urgently needed. In or treaties, too, Brussels, supported by Great Coalition in Berlin, is defending itself against more ambitions. When, for example, French government in Brussels recently campaigned to include climate protection as an integral part of future trade agreements, German Ministry of Economic Affairs blocked it – as trade and destruction of environment simply two Independently of each or. Which of course is rubbish.

Unfortunately, European failure does not currently have political consequences – this is also a consequence of Trump. Because it has neutralized almost every protest against trade policy in Europe. Anyone who criticises EU's liberalisation strategy is now easily put into Trump's Antiglobalisierungslager by ir fans. Free according to motto: anyone demonstrating against our strategy is automatically for Trump. It's nonsense. Neverless, flat-rateization works surprisingly well, critical debates about right agreements are barely heard. But y would be so important. After all, EU should not only agree with rest of world on anything, it should already be good rules. That tame globalization, protect people and nature.

If that succeeds, it will also be easier for those who are still a little gloat to remain in solidarity. Germany. In EU and rest of world.

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