BERLIN: The global economy is slowing and political leaders must avoid any escalation in trade disputes, German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday.
U.S. President Donald Trump's threat this week to impose tariffs on US$11 billion worth of European Union products, including commercial aircraft, has deepened a long-running trans-Atlantic subsidy dispute and opened a new front in his global trade war.
"All parties must do their part to avoid an escalation of trade disputes," Scholz said when asked to comment on the U.S. threat to impose additional tariffs.
Speaking ahead of meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank in Washington later this week, Scholz said that the global economy was losing steam, but that there was still growth in Europe and Germany.
He added that political problems such as the U.S. trade disputes and Brexit could be solved. "That's why the talks in Washington are so important," Scholz said, adding that Germans and Europeans should go into talks with their U.S. counterparts with a cool head.
(Reporting by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Madeline Chambers)