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EU should brace for U.S. standoff over China, ex-WTO chief warns
PARIS (Reuters) – The European Union should prepare for its companies to be targeted by American sanctions in a worsening trade dispute between the United States and China, former World Trade Organisation (WTO) director general Pascal Lamy said on Tuesday. As they weigh up a response to renewed U.S. sanctions against Iran, which have forced an exodus of European companies, EU governments should consider the prospect of similar extraterritorial measures penalizing China trade, Lamy told an international investment conference in Paris. “If the U.S. were to step further in not only hitting China with trade measures but with sanctions, if they were to deal with China the way they did with Iran, then we would all have a big problem,” he said. “That’s why we need to have a careful look at what will happen in the case of Iran.” A surge in global protectionism from Brexit to the U.S.-China trade war has done little to dent foreign direct investment flows overall, according to data presented to the XBMA conference on cross-border mergers and acquisitions.