EP Forum slams US tariffs on Turkey

European Parliament Turkey Forum says US sanctions on Turkey are 'illegitimate' and against WTO rules
Tuesday, 14 August 2018 18:34

A group of European deputies following issues in Turkey has criticized the U.S. decision to impose additional tariffs on Turkish steel and aluminium. 

"An economic destabilization of Turkey is in no one's interest," said a statement Tuesday by the European Parliament Turkey Forum, a cross-party MEP group founded to closely monitor Turkey's European Union accession negotiations.

The forum added that it sees the U.S. sanctions as "illegitimate" and against World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. 

Last week, U.S. President Donald Trump authorized the doubling of steel and aluminium tariffs on Turkey resulting in the Turkish lira reaching a record low.

According to data from the Turkish Steel Exporters Association, more capital-intensive products, used in the automotive and white goods sectors, account for a quarter of Turkey's steel production, while products like rebar and pipes account for 53 percent.

The world's eighth biggest steel producer, Turkey ranks second in global exports of rebar, figures from the World Steel Association show.

U.S. President Donald Trump in March imposed a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminium imports, leading to a 56 percent slump in Turkey's exports to the United States between January and May.

In early July European Union countries also voted in favour of a combination of quota and tariffs to prevent a surge of steel imports into the bloc that could follow the U.S. levies.