Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson told reporters on Saturday that he intends to tell President Trump to deescalate his trade war with China during a planned Sunday meeting.
“You bet,” Johnson said to reporters who asked him whether he would try to persuade the president to ease trade tensions with China. Johnson expressed that his top priority during the G-7 summit was “clearly the state of global trade.”
“I am very worried about the way it’s going, the growth of protectionism, of tariffs that we’re seeing,” he said.
Johnson’s comments came in response to Trump’s recent remarks that he was the first president in U.S. history who has dealt firmly with China. Trump also announced a new series of tariffs on Chinese goods in response to China implementing restrictions on American products.
“China should not have put new Tariffs on 75 BILLION DOLLARS of United States product (politically motivated!),” Trump tweeted on Friday. “Starting on October 1st, the 250 BILLION DOLLARS of goods and products from China, currently being taxed at 25%, will be taxed at 30%,”
He continued, “Additionally, the remaining 300 BILLION DOLLARS of goods and products from China, that was being taxed from September 1st at 10%, will now be taxed at 15%.”
Trump’s remarks elicited concern from Johnson, who does not share the president’s opinion that tariffs are the answer to global problems with China.
“Don’t forget that the U.K. is at risk of being implicated in this,” Johnson also said. “This is not the way to proceed. Apart from everything else, those who support the tariffs are at risk of incurring the blame for the downturn in the global economy, irrespective of whether or not that is true. I want to see an opening up of global trade, I want to see a dialing down of tensions and I want to see tariffs come off.”