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EU tariffs on US goods come into effect

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Republished with permission from Knowhere News

The European Union on Friday imposed retaliatory tariffs on iconic American products like jeans, bourbon, and motorcycles amidst escalating trade tensions with US President Donald Trump.

“The rules of international trade, which we have developed .. with our American partners, cannot be violated without a reaction from our side,” Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said this week.

The list of affected exports does not name specific brands, though European Commission Chief Jean-Claude Juncker said in March the bloc would target “Harley-Davidson, bourbon and Levi’s jeans.”

The new set of tariffs focuses on products that tend to be manufactured in Republican strongholds: playing cards and whiskey from Kentucky, rice from Arkansas, and recreational boats from Florida. The strategy is a deliberate effort by the European Trade Commission to exact political damage on politicians who support Trump’s tariffs.

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The EU’s additional tariffs of 25% will also hit more generic products including orange juice, peanut butter, and cigarettes. In total, the duties target American exports worth roughly $3.4 billion.

The US has imposed similar tariffs on China, Mexico, and Canada as President Donald Trump pushes ahead with a campaign promise to protect American jobs after characterizing trade relationships with those nations as unfair and a potential national security issue.

Trump is now threatening additional tariffs on Europe.

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