According to Filiera Italia, the new serious tensions between the US and China with the announcement by Trump of raising tariffs on the hundreds of billions of China's exports to the US by 25% may become an opportunity for the European Union to carve out a new role. "The EU - says Luigi Scordamaglia, coordinator of Filiera Italia – should put itself towards the USA as a partial and alternative counterpart to China".
The agreement announced by Trump to increase the zero-duty amount of Made in the USA beef (hormones free) in a year by 46% to be exported to the EU "may be an opportunity to eliminate the tensions of recent months - continues Scordamaglia - and to bring back the US threats of duties that would hit the Italian food industry for over two billion euros". It is estimated that about half of our exports, wines and cheeses in particular, are affected.
"The quota of 35,000 tons of meat that can be exported from the United States - says Scordamaglia - is not likely to represent a problem". This is because it is not an incremental quantity, but it would be a reallocation of the same quantity that today is granted to other countries, such as Argentina and Australia. "The advantage of this concession is represented by the fact that the product would be consistent with the hormon free standards of meat produced by the EU and that in the face of this concession should be able to convince Trump to renounce duties against the Italian agri-food industry ".
"Europe should not miss the opportunity to enter into an agreement that guarantees against the escalation of further duties with the United States - says Scordamaglia - and should concentrate on blocking the Mercosur agreement which would see Europe enter zero duty on an enormously higher quantity of meat, and other agricultural products, obtained outside of the EU environmental and safety standards which represent an essential guarantee for our consumers”.
"We must all pay attention - concludes the coordinator of Filiera Italia - to signing agreements that do not guarantee entry into Europe only of products consistent with the standards to which our producers are obliged. Selling food and consumer protection will inevitably lead to negative reactions, more and more aware and determined, similar to what happened a few days ago in France against the ratification of the most controversial points of the Ceta”.