Xavier Bettel and Donald Tusk exchange pleasantries at Château de Senningen ahead of their statements on Brexit on Wednesday
Photo: SIP/Charles Caratini
Brexit; trade war; stock cap--stories on Thursday morning
Brexit losers; trade war rhetoric; stock trading cap--Luxembourg and EU headlines this morning
Bettel and Tusk say no winners of Brexit
Luxembourg prime minister Xavier Bettel and EU president Donald Tusk both pointed to regrets over Brexit but said there will be a price to pay for everyone when the UK leaves the EU. Speaking to the media after a summit at the Château de Senningen, Bettel said: “there will be no winners after Brexit, both sides will be losing.” Tusk added that any post-Brexit trade agreement between the UK and EU would be the first “in history that loosens economic ties instead of strengthening them.” He said that trade would be more complicated and costly for everyone. But Tusk and Bettel also issued a warning to British prime minister Theresa May to stop cherry picking in negotiations with the EU. “The British can’t have the rights of the Norwegians with the obligations of the Canadians,” Tusk said. “I fully understand, and of course I respect, Theresa May’s political objective to demonstrate at any price that Brexit could be a success and was the right choice. Sorry, it’s not our objective.”
EU hopes to avoid US trade war
The rhetoric preceding a possible trade war between the European Union and the United States took another twist on Wednesday. EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmström said that the bloc was prepared to take measures to protect European jobs if a trade war did start. But, she hoped that this would be unnecessary. “A trade war has no winners and if it does not happen for the better, then we can work with our American friends and other allies on the core issue of this problem, overcapacity,” she said on Wednesday, according to Reuters. Malmström said there was no national security justification for the imposition of import duties of 25% on steel into the United States. “We find that assumption to be deeply unjust.” If the tariffs are imposed, Malmström promised a “firm but proportional response” that could also include targeted tariffs on American products such as cranberries, orange juice and peanut butter, in addition to the products previously mentioned by the commission earlier, such as jeans and bourbon.
EU trading cap on “dark pools”
Reuters reports that the European Securities and Markets Authority has published data showing which stocks will be subject to a trading limit in so-called “dark” or off public exchanges. ESMA says the trading cap across the EU will be rolled out on 12 March. The cap will cover over 80 percent of the most heavily traded shares. “The aim is to increase transparency in share trading and stop some investors having an unfair advantage over others,” says the Reuters report.