Estonia assesses very positively the agreement achieved at a meeting between US President Donald Trump and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday to alleviate tensions in bilateral trade relations, a high-ranking official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
"We assess yesterday's meeting very positively," Jüri Seilenthal, director general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' External Economic and Development Cooperation Department, told BNS on Thursday. He emphasised that in its assessment, the ministry is initially relying on information published in the media and the joint statement made by the EU and the US, which Trump used almost in its entirety.
"Based on this, it can be hoped that the further deepening of the trade conflict has been stopped," Seilenthal said. "The parties are instead trying to negotiate reducing tariffs with the aim of reaching zero tariffs in several sectors."
According to the ministry official, non-tariff barriers to trade (NTBs) and grants are also being addressed, and tariffs and so-called countermeasures implemented in the last few months will be reviewed with the aim of attempting to cancel them. New tariffs, he added, will not be imposed until negotiations are ongoing.
"In addition to market distortions caused by state companies, the EU and US will also jointly handle unfair trade moves, theft of intellectual property and cases of forced transfer," Seilenthal said.
Other countries have likewise already welcomed the agreement achieved during Juncker's visit to Washington. German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier called the success at the talks a breakthrough that can help avoid a trade war and save millions of jobs.
The US stock market soared after the meeting, and the Nasdaq technology index once again closed at a record high.
Editor: Aili Vahtla