A Zero-Tariff G7 Area? Yes, Please!

In yet another stunning turn of events at the current G7 meeting in Canada, Donald Trump has argued for a tariff-free G7 area. This would mean zero tariffs and no subsidies. Regardless of whether Trump's suggestion is to be taken seriously, the reactions speak for themselves.

This Is Not the First Time Trump Has Suggested This

Larry Kudlow, national economic adviser to the President, had indicated to the press that he had a “lengthy discussion” about the idea of creating a tariff-free G7.

Reduce those barriers. In fact go to zero, zero tariffs, zero no-tariff barriers, zero subsidies, and along the way we are going to have to clean up the international trading system about which there was virtual consensus of agreement.

"Ultimately that's what you want, you want tariff-free, no barriers, and you want no subsidies because you have some countries subsidizing industries and that's not fair," Trump said. "So you go tariff-free, you go barrier-free, you go subsidy-free, that's the way you learned at the Wharton School of Finance."

After Trump's introduction of new tariffs on both steel and aluminum, the idea that the President would suddenly favor dropping tariffs altogether seems odd. However, it appears that the tariffs aren't really a means of getting the American steel and aluminum industry back on its feet, as mercantilists would lead you to believe, but a means of retaliation. For Trump, America's trading partners have been treating it unfairly, which is why he is obligated to respond to the trade-threat. He is, quite frankly, not entirely wrong about that.

Back in March, when plans for steel tariffs were heavily criticized in Europe, Trump tweeted this:


Once again, Trump appears to favor mutually scrapping all tariff and non-tariff trade barriers. This would end the insufferable regime of unnecessary protectionist policies which give consumers fewer choices and increased prices.

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Gary Anderson 7 months ago Contributor's comment

We could buy stuff still cheaper? How would this possibly help American business? Our cost of production is too high to really compete. I don't honestly believe #Trump is serious about this. It is just to gain votes.