Rise of the Radicals in Europe Will Hurt Trade Deals with the US

The disgruntled voters of Europe have sent a shot across the bow of the mainstream in the region. The European Parliament has nothing like the powers of the national governments, but it has influence nonetheless, and it is now populated with the skeptical extremes of right and left.

Nationalism is on the rise and in all its varieties. This is not good news for those who are advocating a new set of trade deals with the United States. The attitude in Europe is not supportive to begin with, and this simply pushes resistance further. Anything that seems to give the US an edge will be fought tooth and nail, and the US is not looking for a deal that doesn’t provide it some benefit. The negotiators will soldier on and there will be declarations of progress from time to time, but the reality is that nobody is in a position to make much of a concession to anyone else.

The US trade policy is in tatters right now and is unlikely to be rescued. The agreements with the Pacific nations are being held captive by the Democrats, as they do not trust these deals even as they agree that China needs to be hemmed in. The European deal was in trouble anyway, as France threw up a wide variety of barriers. The rise of the National Front, UKIP and the other parties of the one-time fringe will make this process all the more challenging

- Chris Kuehl, PhD, Armada Corporate Intelligence

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