European Council President Donald Tusk slammed what he called “senseless disputes” about trade between President TrumpDonald John TrumpDavid Axelrod after Ginsburg cancer treatment: Supreme Court vacancy could ‘tear this country apart’ EU says it will ‘respond in kind’ if US slaps tariffs on France Ginsburg again leaves Supreme Court with an uncertain future MORE and other international leaders, warning that the president’s recent actions on tariffs could “be really risky for the whole world.”
Tusk warned reporters at the Group of Seven (G-7) summit in France on Saturday that “this may be the last moment to restore our political community,” according to The Washington Post.
On Friday, trade tensions between the United States and China escalated significantly after China announced plans to slap tariffs on $75 billion worth of American goods. The country said it was “forced to take countermeasures” against the U.S. after getting hit with tariffs by the Trump administration in the two nations’ year-plus trade war.
Trump vowed to take retaliatory measures against China shortly thereafter and said in a tweet that U.S. businesses were “hereby ordered” to “find alternatives” to China. “We don’t need China. This is a GREAT opportunity for the United States,” he added.
Trump’s remarks, combined with China’s latest round of tariffs and his administration’s vow to retaliate with tariffs on over $500 billion in Chinese goods, prompted stocks to plunge in the country not long afterward. The culmination of events in the past day have also fueled concerns about whether the global economy could soon be headed toward a recession.
Tusk cautioned on Saturday that “trade wars will lead to recession, while trade deals will boost the economy.”
He also took further aim at Trump for using “tariffs and taxation as a political instrument” in later comments.
“For me, it’s absolutely clear that if someone, for example … the United States and President Trump, uses tariffs and taxation as a political instrument, tool for some different political reasons, it means that this confrontation can be really risky for the whole world, including the EU,” he told the press, according to the Post.
“This is why we need the G-7,” he continued.
Tusk also warned on Saturday that the European Union plans to “respond in kind” if the Trump administration decides follow through on threats to impose tariffs on French wines over the nation’s new digital tax law.
“The EU stands by France. If the U.S. imposes tariffs on France, the EU will respond in kind,” he said, adding, “And if they do that … we’ll be taxing their wine like they’ve never seen before.”