Trump imposed tariffs of 25 per cent on steel imports and 10 per cent on imported aluminium from the European Union on June 1.
The products affected will include cigarettes, denim, peanut butter, orange juice, blue jeans, bourbon, and motorcycles. The EU does not rely on the U.S.as a market for its steel exports as much as Canada or Mexico, which are also being hit by the US tariffs and stand to lose more.
Speaking in Ireland, he said: "The trade that we believe in is built on rules, trust and reliable partnership".
"While average trade-weighted USA -imposed tariffs on its imports are lower than those imposed by the EU, Canada, Mexico and China, the difference is marginal", he noted. Beijing has vowed to immediately retaliate with its own tariffs on US soybeans and other farm products in a direct shot at Mr. Trump's supporters in America's heartland.
American tariffs on steel and aluminum have also hit Canada, Mexico, India, Turkey and India.
The bloc has been threatening reprisals for President Donald Trump's unilateral decision to slap steel and aluminium entering the U.S. with duties, which began earlier this month.
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Most economists say the effect of higher worldwide import tariffs will drive up costs for consumers, offsetting much of the benefit of protecting domestic industries for the country imposing them.
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As painful as the brewing trade war could prove, many have seen it coming.
Trump has also started a trade fight with China over Beijing's sharp-elbowed efforts to overtake US technological dominance.
The firms called for all tariffs to end, on both the European Union and U.S. side, to boost free but also fair trade across the Atlantic, passing the message to the U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell. The countries have hit each other with tariffs on $50 billion worth of goods; Trump has threatened to add another $200 billion.
"The president has been so belligerent that it becomes nearly impossible for democratically elected leaders - or even a non-democratic leader like (Chinese president) Xi Jinping - to appear to kowtow and give in", said Philip Levy, senior fellow at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and a former White House trade adviser.