U.S. has only a few days to avoid trade war - France's Le Maire

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire walks at the Bercy Finance Ministry in Paris, France, May 31, 2018. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer

WHISTLER, British Columbia (Reuters) - The United States has only a few days to avoid sparking a trade war with its allies, and it is up to Washington to make a move to de-escalate tensions over tariffs, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Saturday.

Speaking after a meeting of G7 finance ministers in the mountain resort of Whistler, British Columbia, Le Maire said the European Union was poised to take counter-measures against the new U.S. steel and aluminium import tariffs.

“We still have a few days to take the necessary steps to avoid a trade war between the EU and the U.S., and to avoid a trade war among G7 members,” Le Maire told reporters after the meeting wrapped up.

“The ball is in the camp of the United States, it is up to the American administration to take the right decisions to smooth the situation and to alleviate the difficulties,” he added.

Reporting by Leigh Thomas; Editing by Paul Simao