European Union levies tariffs on $3.2B on United States goods over metals duties

Donald Trump hit the EU, Canada and Mexico with tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum at the start of June, ending exemptions that had been in place since March.

The European Union has announced a new range of retaliatory tariffs against the United States, in response to the USA revoking the EU's exemption from steel and aluminum tariffs.

After months of talks, the Trump administration ended in June a temporary two-month exemption for the European Union as well as Mexico and Canada, all of which have retaliated or plan to do so soon.

Separately it is also pursuing the case with the World Trade Organisation, arguing that the White House's reasons for the tariffs - that the glut of steel and aluminium poses a security threat - are not valid.

The EU tit-for-tat tariffs will hit about 200 US products that include steel and aluminum, corn, rice, orange juice, cigarettes, peanuts, cigars, T-shirts, cosmetics and boats.

The European Commission today formally adopted the implementing regulation that will slam 25 percent tariffs on a list of American products worth €2.8 billion.

The EU also has in reserve potential tariffs of 10 percent to 50 percent that it could impose on a further 3.6 billion euros of US imports in three years' time.

European Union trade official Cecilia Malmström said that the European Union "did not want to be in this position", but that it had no choice.

USA and European Union flags are pictured during the visit of Vice President Mike Pence to the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium February 20, 2017.

The EU has also filed a case contesting the legality of the USA tariffs with the World Trade Organization.

The EU could levy more tariffs of between 10 percent to 50 percent on billions more in US goods by 2021.

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