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AmCham Denmark Concerned over Unilateral Trade Action
 
Executive Director Stephen Brugger, AmCham Denmark
Transatlantic Relationship in Numbers

U.S. government's plans to impose tariffs and limits on imports of steel and aluminum on the basis of national security, authorized under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, would fail to appropriately address legitimate concerns regarding global overcapacity. It also risks a deterioration in transatlantic economic and political relations that could threaten jobs, investment and security on both sides of the Atlantic.

The American Chamber of Commerce in Denmark (AmCham Denmark) shares the U.S. government’s concerns regarding global overcapacity of steel and aluminum, which can hurt domestic jobs in the EU and the US and encourage unfair trading practices.

However, this decision would unfairly target European and Danish manufacturers and would not address Chinese excess capacity, the root cause of the issue. The decision could lead to retaliatory measures by the EU against U.S. companies and also could contravene World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. American companies employ more than 4.7 million workers in Europe, with aggregate U.S. investment totaling more than €2 trillion in 2017.

Stephen Brugger, Executive Director of AmCham Denmark, said: “Free trade is a fundamental principle of economic prosperity and peace. Addressing global overcapacity of steel and aluminum requires coordinated action by the EU and the U.S. Unilateral U.S. government actions would fail to address this issue and instead risk harming America’s relationship with Europe, its staunchest ally.”

A March 5th study released by “The Trade Partnership” estimates that the tariffs would increase U.S. iron and steel employment and non-ferrous metals (primarily aluminum) employment by 33,464 jobs, but cost 179,334 jobs throughout the rest of the economy, for a net loss of nearly 146,000 jobs.”

  • More than five jobs would be lost for every one gained;
  • Two thirds of the lost jobs affect workers in production and low-skill jobs.

Tom Donohue, CEO, U.S. Chamber states: “The U.S. Chamber is very concerned about the increasing prospects of a trade war, which would put at risk the economic momentum achieved through the administration’s tax and regulatory reforms. We won’t drive the (U.S.) economy to over 3 percent growth or continue to create jobs if we go down this path”.

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Background on the U.S. – Danish economic relationship

  • 657 Danish companies create 60,000 jobs in the U.S. / U.S. companies create 39,000 jobs in Denmark (source: Danmarks Statistik and U.S. Department of Commerce)
  • Danish companies export for more than DKK 99 billion per year. (source: Danmarks Statistik and U.S. Department of Commerce)
  • The U.S. is Denmark’s largest trading partner outside the EU and a stable economic environment on both side of the Atlantic is thus crucial for the Danish economy.

About AmCham Denmark
Established in 1999, The American Chamber of Commerce in Denmark (AmCham Denmark) is a non-profit, non-governmental business association representing more than 260 U.S., Danish and international  companies actively investing in Denmark and the U.S.  As the voice for international business in Denmark, AmCham is committed to building a competitive business environment in Denmark, and to doing its part to minimize barriers to international trade.
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