In mid-January, U.S. President Donald Trump is slated to sign a so-called phase one trade deal with China, which may put the U.S.-Chinese trade war on the back burner for the coming year. But that doesn’t mean the United States’ trade disputes are over. In fact, all signs now point to a trans-Atlantic trade war taking center stage in 2020.
Over the coming year, the Trump administration will likely ratchet up tariffs on a variety of European goods. And the European Union will retaliate in kind. Such tit-for-tat skirmishing risks spiraling out of control as Brussels gets serious about limiting climate change while Washington continues to pull back from its international commitments to contain carbon emissions.