Ahead of Trump arrival, Ireland’s finance minister sounds trade warning

The finance minister of Ireland conceded that his country’s economy is at risk to the effects of a trade war between the likes of the EU, the U.S. and China.

Paschal Donohoe told CNBC’s Willem Marx Wednesday that the country’s open and globalized economy does leave it exposed to unpredictable taxes and tariffs.

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Anything that happens in global trade does have an effect on the performance of our economy and there is a vulnerability that could develop into the future,

Donohoe said.

President Donald Trump will arrive in Ireland later Wednesday to hold talks with Prime Minister Leo Varadkar. The two are expected to discuss a range of issues, including Brexit and trade.

Donohoe said he expected Varadkar to spell out to Trump that U.S. exporters looking to sell in Europe, or in other parts of the world, would find Ireland an attractive place to set up base. The finance minister said evidence of this trend was already underway.

Since the focus on President Trump’s trade policy has grown, we have actually seen more international investors and companies wanting to be here in Ireland.

Donohoe added that the Irish leader would also look to strengthen its labor presence within the U.S.

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