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Negotiations have been ongoing between the countries as the UK tries to end tariffs on steel and aluminium that former President Donald Trump imposed in 2018. International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan made the journey to Washington to discuss these tariffs.
Following a visit to the capital of the US, Ms Trevelyan vowed that the UK will do whatever is necessary to bring an end to the dispute.
She said: “We have been clear all along that resolving this dispute is the right thing to do.
“It will benefit workers and businesses on both sides of the Atlantic, and would remove the need for the U.K. to levy retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.”
Despite the positive messaging, POLITICO argues the UK is “getting tired of playing nice”.
It said: “In its long-running trade dispute with the US over steel and aluminium tariffs, the UK is getting tired of playing nice.
“The question is whether playing nasty and threatening Washington will work.”
David Henig, co-founder of the U.K. Trade Forum, made clear that the threat of the US by the UK over this dispute is not a great idea.
Mr Henig said: “The idea of the U.K. threatening the U.S. with a heightened trade conflict is utterly preposterous.”
The UK already had tariffs in place for the US, with both Bourbon whiskey and Harley-Davidson motorbikes included in these.
However, these may be increased should an end to the dispute not be found.
As well as this increase, tariffs on US wines may also be considered.
The UK has been making strides towards agreeing an end to the dispute, with an invitation sent by the International Trade Secretary to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to visit London next month.
However, Ms Trevelyan did not even get a reply to this invitation.
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To make matters worse, the US will ease the same tariffs next month for the EU – despite the UK continuing to have them.
After the UK’s departure from the EU, this will possibly weaken the pursuit of an agreement.
But the pressure is very much on for the Government to come up with a deal, with the opposition “disappointed” that no deal has been agreed in Washington.
Shadow International Trade Secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds took aim at Ms Trevelyan for not bringing an end to the dispute.
Mr Thomas-Symonds said: “Time is running out.
He added the Government “must stop letting down our steel communities.”
As well as from the opposition, agitation from Ms Trevelyan’s own side is also growing.
According to reports, Conservative MPs in steel-manufacturing seats are becoming increasingly concerned that no agreements are close to being made in relation to the tariffs.
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