World Bulletin / News Desk
Trump claimed earlier in the day that tariffs “are the greatest!” amid the ongoing trade disputes.
"Countries that have treated us unfairly on trade for years are all coming to Washington to negotiate," Trump said on Twitter. "Tariffs are the greatest! Either a country which has treated the United States unfairly on Trade negotiates a fair deal, or it gets hit with Tariffs. It’s as simple as that - and everybody’s talking!"
But Ryan remained adamant that levies are not the right approach to correcting trade imbalances and alleged intellectual property theft - both goals of Trump's economic policy.
“I don’t think tariffs are the right answer. I don’t support tariffs," he told reporters on Capitol Hill. "I think there are better tools that we can use to hold abusers of trade laws, and countries that perpetuate unfair trade practices, I think there are better tools to use to get them to play fairly."
"I just don't think the tariff route is the smart way to go," he added.
Trump's initial decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports due to national security concerns has sparked retaliatory economic measures from a broad range of countries and blocs, including Canada, China and the European Union.
Additional waves of tariffs on China, in particular, have led to a mutual escalation of the penalties.
Trump has warned of pursuing additional 20 percent tariffs on European auto imports, which has raised the specter of further levies on U.S. goods.
Ryan said he "understands" what Trump is trying to do, but maintained tariffs are not an effective way of pursuing the president's goals.