German Chancellor Angela Merkel has an advantage when she meets Donald Trump to discuss a variety of conflicts: the expectations that she can bring to the US President are almost zero.
After three days of popping bonhomie with French President Emmanuel Macron Trump has two hours on Friday for a meeting of the White House with the leader of the largest European economy. And the list of American grievances, from Germany's huge trade surplus and poor defense spending to a new Russian natural gas pipeline to Europe, usually defies rapid solutions.
The same applies to the imminent danger of a trade war between the US and the US European Union. German officials say Merkel sees little chance of stopping the tariffs that Trump wants to impose on imports of European aluminum and steel on May 1
Taken Apart from the State of Macron 's State of Mind. Emagazine.credit-suisse.com/app/art … = 120 & lang = DE Merkel will prevail with her methodical approach, which she has held for more than 12 years. It will cut off a two-prong movement from the two leading EU leaders and try to achieve what even Macron could not achieve: convince Trump to revoke his fighting stance on trade and the Iranian nuclear deal.
"Macron has a different style, a different personal approach – and he does not have this bilateral agenda," said Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff, vice president of the German Marshall Fund in Berlin, in an interview. "But with all his style he has not got anything yet … I have not seen the impact on Donald Trump yet."
Trump actually said on Thursday that Macron "his attitude to the Iran pact" would really recognize.
"He sees, I think Iran is a lot different than before when he went to the Oval Office and I think that's important," Trump said to Fox. He reiterated his belief that the Obama administration had "made a terrible deal" to freeze Iran's nuclear weapons program.
Merkel and Macron coordinated their rapprochements with Trump during the talks in Berlin last week and spoke again on the eve of their Washington visit.
In her case, the government wants Germany to help improve competitive conditions in trade, join the US in tackling global unfair trade practices, and take on more of NATO's defense spending, according to a White House official.
Merkel's goal is to extend Trump's tariff waiver for the EU by offering him longer-term trade talks, including the prospect of renegotiating duties on industrial goods, a German official said on Thursday in Berlin.
While Macron proposes a four-point plan to overcome Trump's objections to the Iranian nuclear deal, Merkel wants to avert a trade war by offering to discuss grievances and get rid of public tit-for-tat threats. But also Germany and France are arguing about it what should be included in such discussions.
The US is willing, under certain conditions, to reduce the risk of tariffs, the Bild newspaper reported on Friday, without saying what that might be or quoting any source.
Merkel is also facing domestic pressure to stand up to Trump. Bild, Germany's most widely read daily, said the US president accepted Macron in a way "the Chancellor can only dream of".
Germany's other immediate goal is to avert potential US sanctions related to the North's Stream 2 pipeline project, which the US is opposed to. Without giving up the project, Merkel postponed the floor in March, saying that political considerations had to be taken into account.
And with the US on its way to becoming the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, Merkel's government welcomes a LNG terminal being built in the North Sea port of Brunsbüttel
Read more: Merkel seeks LNG to lessen Germany's dependence on Russia
"I think we can make progress in shielding European companies from US sanctions In relation to Nord Stream 2, Peter Beyer, Federal Government Coordinator for Relations with the US, told SWR.
For all Trying to deal with Trump, the Chancellery officials in Berlin consider it as intrusive disinclination to long discussions that make the chance of understanding very unpredictable.
"You might as well ask me if I'll win a big lottery prize next weekend , Economics Minister Peter Altmaier, said the German, the Merkel for trade talks with US Be sent in March. "It's possible, but you just do not know it in advance."
– With the support of Justin Sink