The European Union on Wednesday released a preliminary list of U.S. imports to be considered for tariffs. The list includes products such as seafood, fresh and dried produce, nuts, alcohol, chemicals, adhesives, suitcases, handbags and tractors, representing a total of $20 billion of U.S. exports to the EU.
The EU’s list follows a proposal last week from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) to put tariffs on $11 billion worth of EU imports. At the time, the EU said it was ready to retaliate in kind.
An arbitrator appointed by the WTO will decide the value of goods appropriate for tariffs. While the lists of tariffs from the EU and U.S. are preliminary, the EU proposal sounds a warning bell for U.S. companies with global supply chains that import from or export to the EU.
“The only way for a business to operate is to assume things could get worse before they get better,” Maine Pointe CEO Steve Bowen previously told Supply Chain Dive.
Retaliatory tariffs on $20 billion worth of U.S. imports to the EU could prove particularly taxing for U.S. businesses. The U.S. exported $319 billion worth of goods to the EU last year with top categories including machinery, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment.
This latest list of proposed tariffs could sour the mood and add further tension to U.S.-EU relations.