ParcelCompare: could US EU trade war hit e-commerce?

The UK / US trade war is set to escalate – and this will impact e-commerce according to ParcelCompare as tit for tat tariffs are put in place between the EU on one side and the US on the other. Ultimately this could cost UK e-commerce dear.

“British manufacturers, retailers and importers could be badly damaged by an escalating tariff war with the US. President Trump announced a 25% tariff on imported steel last week, and then, when the EU protested, threatened to impose a new tax on EU (including UK) cars. This would be serious for UK manufacturers as the US takes 15.7% of all British car exports and currently only charges a 2% tariff on cars from the EU. Interestingly, the EU/UK imposes a 10% tariff on cars imported from the US,” explained ParcelCompare’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks MILT.

As things stand, the EU has threatened to impose a 25% tariff on popular American products including Levi’s, Harley Davidson and Bourbon. UK consumers could end up paying £81 for a pair of jeans and £25 for a bottle of Jack Daniels.

The question that ParcelCompare’s Jinks further asked is, what would happen if the US imposed further tariffs? Brands such as Burberry or Triumph that are popular in the US could acquire a bad image because of their increased prices.

“ParcelCompare shippers are selling to the US more than ever before, thanks to the low value of the pound, and a generous $800 threshold under which no tariffs and taxes are imposed on EU/UK goods going into the US. America is also an easy place to do business thanks to a shared language and history. British businesses cannot afford to be dragged into a tit-for-tat row with the US, and all sides should be looking to calm the situation, rather than inflame it,” concluded Jinks.