European Council chief tells EU to prepare for ‘worst case scenarios’ during Trump administration

28 June 2018

European Council chief tells EU to prepare for ‘worst case scenarios’ during Trump administration

European Council president Donald Tusk, has told European Union (EU) member countries to prepare for “worst case scenarios” amid a deteriorating relationship with the US.

As a trade war looms between Washington and Brussels, Mr Tusk sent a pre-summit invitation letter on Wednesday to leaders of countries in the EU, warning that “trans-Atlantic relations are under immense pressure due to the policies of Donald Trump.”

Mr Tusk, who will lead the two-day summit that commences on Thursday in Brussels, said that “unfortunately, the divisions go beyond trade.”

“It is my belief that, while hoping for the best, we must be ready to prepare our Union for worst-case scenarios,” he wrote.

The tensions between the US and the EU have risen after Mr Trump imposed tariffs on imports of European steel and aluminum earlier this month, which resulted in a critical response from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emmanuel Macron during the G7 summit.

Mr Tusk is expected to address those events in a speech at the upcoming summit in Brussels.

The rift has grown considerably wider this week after Harley-Davidson announced that it would move some of their manufacturing out of the US to avoid EU tariffs, a decision that sparked outrage from Mr Trump.

Mr Tusk said he believes that Mr Trump’s actions involving tariffs is pure protectionism and his decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal is not isolated incident but rather a recurring pattern that could start a trade war.