This article is the English version of : John Solal-Arouet and Denis Tersen, « Trump et l’avenir de la politique commerciale européenne », published in Politique étrangère, Vol. 82, Issue 1 , 2017.

“In general, if we want free trade, it is to alleviate the condition of the laboring class, but, surprisingly, the people, whose thus provided bread is cheap enough, is very ungrateful.”

Karl Marx, Speech on free trade, 1848.

The United States has chosen a protectionist and isolationist president. Of course, promises and programs do not automatically become policies once the election is past. But a candidate’s program that attacks China and Mexico, threatens to leave the World Trade Organization (WTO), denounces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the Paris climate agreement, refuses to sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership Project (TPP) negotiated by his predecessor, becomes a commitment for the president.