EU and China considering retaliation against popular American companies in response to potential Trump steel and aluminum tariffs

  • The EU is targeting products with political punch. Reportedly in its sights: items such as Harley-Davidson motorcycles, whose corporate headquarters is in House Speaker Paul Ryan’s home state of Wisconsin.
  • China’s Ministry of Commerce is investigating whether to limit imports of U.S. sorghum, a cereal grain used to feed livestock.
  • The Commerce Department is making a case that the dumping of cheap steel and aluminum from China and other countries puts U.S. competitors out of business, risking national security.


Tough tariff stance could trigger retaliation from allies from CNBC.


As the Trump administration considers what action to take on trade tariffs on steel and aluminum, European Union and Chinese officials are considering taking aim at politically strategic products made in the U.S., such as bourbon and motorcycles.
Of the options laid out by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the administration is considering the most wide-reaching penalty: slapping tariffs on all steel and aluminum imported into the U.S., not just imports from specific countries.
The EU is targeting products with political punch, revisiting a list compiled during George W. Bush-era trade disputes of symbolic American brands.

Potentially in the EU’s sights: items such as Harley-Davidsonmotorcycles, whose corporate headquarters is in House Speaker Paul Ryan‘s home state of Wisconsin. Bourbon is another target, having enjoyed a surge in exports to the EU. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell‘s home state of Kentucky exported $154 million worth of bourbon to the EU, up from $128 million in 2016, according to data from the International Trade Commission.
Agriculture products such as cheese, orange juice, tomatoes and potatoes are also targets for retaliation.