Journal of Social and Political


ISSN 2615-3718 (Online)

ISSN 2621-5675 (Print)

Published: 05 February 2020

EU Trade Policy Amid US-China Trade Confrontation

Asad Ullah, Asadullah Aria, Muhammad Nauman Akhter

Shandong University Qingdao Campus China, Al Beroni University Afghanistan

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Pages: 90-102

Keywords: United States, China, European Union, Trade Confrontation, Unilateral Measures, Tit-For-Tat Retaliation Strategy, Protectionism, Trade Policy


The current United States' aggressive and unilateral trade policy, as well as the rapid rise of the Chinese unique economic system – now challenging the constant rules-based trade’s institution and global trading system. In the current on-going US-China trade spat, the European Union (EU) has a substantial interest, even if it has been so far reasonably kept from the United States (US) aggressive trade policy and the reaction of China. In such unpredictable circumstances, I begin to argue that the EU should adopt a practically independent trade policy, which can be made rendering to the contemporary setup and going beyond. Finding that how the EU treated both the US and China, I found that the EU was more adjacent to the US than China, but as China became more open to the world and the EU demand upsurge, the EU today shared an equal interest with both China and the US. I then demonstrate that such situation makes it impossible for the EU to build an extensive trade policy. The EU must make a steady trade policy for protecting its economy; in such case, I never mean that the EU has to make an extensive choice or either siding China or the US, or one against the other – EU to protect its economic market can decide and act henceforth. The EU, even more than China and the US, abide and has a strategic interest in preserving global rules-based organization such as the World Trade Organization (WTO). As the US repeatedly challenged the WTO Appellate Body, I then recommend that the EU should take the leadership for making WTO reforms and negotiation together with other aligned states like China and Japan. The EU must reinforce its domestic tools for addressing present and future challenges, mostly in trade and security related areas. In the time being, I suggest that the EU should prepare itself for a more stringent time; the EU should review and rethink some of its trade policy. In such situations, I believe that the EU parliaments can play a vital role to contest with the current challenges and come up with new trade policy which could overwhelm the current punitive status quo without hurting the contemporary global trading system.


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