BDI participates in U.S. consultation on trade deficits

The U.S. government under President Trump has criticized countries that have a large bilateral trade surplus with the United States. This applies, for example, to China and Mexico as well as Germany.

The U.S. government is now examining trade relations with these countries more closely. In April stakeholders were invited to take part in a public consultation on “significant trade deficits.” BDI made a submission which points out that Germany’s trade surplus vis-à-vis the United States and other countries is a result of a variety of factors. These factors are market-driven and not the result of an explicit export-promotion strategy by the government or by the business community. They include the openness of Germany’s economy, the competitiveness of German businesses and products, currency effects, a large foreign direct investment (FDI) position, as well as domestic factors like demographics, the low level of domestic investment, and a relatively high savings rate.

We believe that the U.S. trade deficit with Germany cannot and should not be addressed through trade-related measures. German businesses can contribute to a strong U.S. manufacturing base through investment, exports, employment, workforce development, and R&D activities, only because of an open and rules-based trade and investment relationship between the United States and Germany. The transatlantic trade and investment relationship is vibrant. Yet there are still barriers to trade on both sides of the Atlantic. Removing these barriers would further spur economic growth in the United States and Europe.

Please find BDI’s submission below.