- Title: Germany's trade surplus "neither good nor evil" - govt spokesman
- Date: 26th May 2017
- Summary: BERLIN, GERMANY (MAY 26, 2017) (REUTERS) GERMAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN GEORG STREITER ARRIVING FOR REGULAR GOVERNMENT NEWS CONFERENCE NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN, GEORG STREITER, SAYING: "A trade surplus is neither good nor evil. It is the result of the interplay of supply and demand on global markets. That is how a surplus is created or not. It is rooted in factors which cannot be directly affected by economic and fiscal policies in Germany, for example the oil price or the euro rate, but also structural factors like demographic change or the high investment abroad by German companies in recent years. So to answer your question, a trade surplus is neither good nor evil." JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN, STEFFEN SEIBERT, SAYING: "In the documents which were endorsed yesterday with the agreement of the US president, the German government was able to ensure the inclusion of our concept of an expanded meaning of the term 'security'. Namely, making clear that security is much more than the number of weapons, the deployment of weapons. This is a debate we gladly continue to have in the alliance and beyond, including in the light of the US president's comments. For the time being we are satisfied with what was agreed. That is the basis for our actions and the fact that the US president is, how shall I put it, sometimes rather unpredictable - I say it cautiously - that's something which representatives of his US government saw for themselves when he gave this speech in front of the headquarters at the opening." SEIBERT AND STREITER NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS
- Embargoed: 9th June 2017 12:58
- Keywords: German government response German trade surplus Donald Trump
- Location: BERLIN, GERMANY
- City: BERLIN, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Government/Politics,International Trade
- Reuters ID: LVA0016IH6KW7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Germany's trade surplus is "neither good nor evil", a German government spokesman said on Friday (May 26) when asked about reports that U.S. President Donald Trump had criticised Berlin for running a high trade surplus.
Speaking at a regular government news conference, spokesman Georg Streiter said the trade surplus was also affected by structural factors beyond the influence of German economic and fiscal policy.
According to German media reports, Trump condemned Germany for "very bad" trade policies during a meeting on Thursday (May 25) with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, signalling he might take steps to limit sales of German cars in the United States.
Speaking at the same news conference, government spokesman Steffen Seibert also defended Germany's contribution to burden-sharing within NATO, saying security was "much more than the number of weapons".
His comments came after Trump intensified his accusations that NATO allies were not spending enough on defence and warned of more attacks like this week's Manchester bombing unless the alliance did more to stop militants.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2017. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None