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EU threatens reprisal if hit by US steel, aluminum tariffs

The European Commission has warned Washington that it is ready to react if its industry is hit by steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, Reuters reported.

"We have made it clear to the U.S. administration at the highest level that we would be deeply concerned about measures that affect the EU industry," Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas told reporters at a press conference. "We would be taking appropriate measures to defend EU industry and we stand ready to react swiftly and appropriately in case our exports are affected by any restrictive measures by the United States," he said before adding "No, we are not in a trade war."

The U.S. Commerce Department has recommended a global tariff of at least 24% on steel imports and a 7.7% tariff on aluminum imports. The department also recommended targeting select nations with even higher tariffs and limiting how much steel comes into the country.

China has already warned the U.S. of possible retaliation if it proceeds to apply the tariffs.