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Senators urge US Trade Representative to lift tariffs on EU goods

Senators urge US Trade Representative to lift tariffs on EU goods

Mubasher: A bipartisan group of 13 US senators has called on the US Trade Representative’s Office (USTR) to cancel 25% tariffs imposed on European Union food, wine, and spirits in October 2019, as shown by a letter seen by Reuters.

In the letter to USTR, seven Republican and six Democratic senators referred that the restaurants, retailers, grocers, importers, and distributors across the US are facing tough economic conditions amid the increased cost of goods due to the tariffs. 

In 2019, the US has been granted authorisation from the World Trade Organization (WTO) to impose tariffs up to $7.5 billion on products such as French wine, Italian cheese, as well as cookies, salami, yoghurt, and olives from France

This move seeks to retaliate European countries' illegal subsidies and loans offered to the European aircraft Airbus.

Therefore, the senators remarked that demands on these goods decreased, putting pressure on importers and distributors with months' worth goods which would be perishable in storage and transit amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

In July, Airbus announced that it would raise its loan repayments to France and Spain to resolve the problem of US tariffs and end a 16-year old dispute over the EU subsidies to the aircraft.

Noteworthy to mention, in June, a notice published by the Office of the US Trade Representative showed that the US is considering imposing new tariffs worth $3.1 billion on exports from France, Germany, Spain, and the UK, as part of its dispute with the trading partners.