WHISTLER, British Columbia (Reuters) - U.S. tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum from the European Union are likely to have only a limited direct impact on the EU economy, but risk hurting business and consumer confidence, European Central Bank policymaker Jens Weidmann said on Friday.
Weidmann, head of Germany’s Bundesbank, told German broadcaster ZDF on the sidelines of a G7 meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs in Canada that fears of escalating trade tensions between the United States and the rest of the world were a key risk.
“The direct impact of the U.S. decision is in my view limited,” he said. “We are speaking of 0.04 percent of the GDP of the EU. But the possibility of a further escalation of the conflict could damage the confidence of consumers and business.”
Reporting by Gernot Heller; writing by Jan Strupczewski and David Milliken; Editing by Leslie Adler