AmCham event highlights trade wars problems
Ljubljana, 25 September - A business breakfast hosted by AmCham Slovenija highlighted a number of challenges the EU faces in the wake of trade wars between the US and China on Tuesday. Chinese practices often go against global rules, "but I sincerely hope that dialogue will take place and a solution will be found," said Božo Cerar, former ambassador to the US.
Cerar believes that we are witnessing a key transition from a post-Cold War unipolar world to a multipolar world. "The US have been joined in the global arena by countries like China, Russia and India."
"The question is what this transition will look like. Either the countries find a way to coexist and cooperate on the biggest problems: from climate change and sustainable development to war hotspots; or there will be a clash."
As regards Slovenia's role in the world, Cerar shared the view with other speakers that the country has to be more proactive, confident, innovative and should not consider itself a small country.
But the country must also be aware of the framework it has entered: "We are a member of the EU and NATO, no longer a part of the Non-Aligned Movement, and we share certain values with this family: democracy, human rights, international law, market economy and so on."
Cerar said that Slovenia had not acted the part in the past years, pointing to the failure to meet the NATO defence spending target and a negative readiness evaluation of a battle unit. "This affected relations with Washington in a negative way."
Meanwhile, management board member of industrial conglomerate Kolektor Group Valter Leban said that the trade wars would affect the company, which makes a variety of parts for the car industry.
"US President Donald Trump has decided to protect the US automotive industry and we are a part of the supply chain. It will affect us, the question is how hard and when."
The company also faces intellectual property problems in China. "You need to be innovative the entire time but at the same time you risk losing the innovation."