One of Germany's top foreign policy officials met with members of the Trump regime this week and he apparently believes that Trump will impose all of the various tariffs he has considered imposing on members of the European Union.
From tariffs on foreign cars and car parts, to tariffs imposed in response to aircraft subisides, natural gas, and even at some point in time, taxes on internet companies -- Germany's Transatlantic Coordinator at the foreign ministry (their version of the State Department) believes Trump will impose all of them and some could come as early as next week.
From the New York Times:
[Transatlantic Coordinator Peter Beyer], who met with officials from the USTR'S office and the White House, as well as U.S. lawmakers, said the auto tariffs were likely in mid-November, given growing impatience in Washington with the EU and the bloc's refusal to include agriculture in broader trade talks.
"When it comes to the car tariffs, I unfortunately think they are more likely than not to be imposed in mid-November. There is quite a lot of impatience on the U.S. side. But that also requires us on the European side to be strong and unified."
Beyer said the U.S. government appeared interested in resolving disputes between the United States and the EU before the World Trade Organization (WTO) over aircraft subsidies, but was unlikely to refrain from imposing tariffs in the interim.
"The WTO arbitrator decision is expected soon, as early as next week. I fully expect the Trump administration to impose tariffs. The U.S. side feels entitled to impose the tariffs and I believe they will, in any case," he said.
The Trump regime has drafted a list of up to $25 billion in European goods they could impose tariffs on in response to the WTO's upcoming ruling on aircraft subsidies; a ruling that is expected very soon.
The EU has also drafted a list of American goods they will impose retaliatory tariffs on if Trump imposes his tariffs first.
And that's just the beginning. If German officials are correct and Trump does impose tariffs on foreign cars and car parts later this year, everything is fucked. There's no delicate way to put it that would adequately convey how calamitous that could be.
There's a very real risk that Trump will impose his tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese goods and impose tariffs on foreign cars and car parts which would severely harm every automaker including American automakers, not just German, Japanese, or South Korean automakers. And we can confidently bet that every nation's retaliatory tariffs will hit the American agricultural industry.
The Senate Republican refusal to impose any check on Trump's power to impose tariffs could still open Pandora's Box.