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US-European talks launched to resolve steel export tariffs

The European Union and the United States agreed on Monday to hold talks to end the dispute over tariffs on steel and aluminum exports, in an additional step towards a trade truce.

According to Swissinfo, US Trade Representative Catherine Tay and her European counterpart Valdes Dombrovskis announced "the start of talks to deal with the global excess capacity for steel and aluminum" and touched upon China's major role in the problem.

The Europeans will also temporarily suspend a plan to increase fees to the United States, according to the European Union.

The dispute began in June 2018 when Trump imposed tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum imported from Europe, Asia and elsewhere.

Brussels responded by imposing counter-duties on US products with a symbolic value of € 2.8 billion.

The European Union had planned to increase these countercharges on the first of June, but given the easing of tension during the administration of the current US President Joe Biden, he confirmed that he would refrain from doing so.

In return, the two sides agreed to engage in a dialogue regarding surplus steel production.

While the statement did not specifically refer to the fees, it stated that the two sides "agreed to avoid any changes in these matters that negatively affect bilateral trade."