Trade

Merkel expresses concern over impact of border restrictions on EU trade

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Tuesday it is “crucial” to maintain the free flow of goods despite EU countries closing their borders because of the coronavirus.

“At the moment there are a few difficulties,” Merkel told reporters following a videoconference with other EU leaders, mentioning long wait times for freight transporters at some of the blocs internal borders.

Countries have in past days implemented border checks and travel restrictions inside the EU, with countries from Slovakia to Poland and Germany reimposing controls in a bid to tackle the spiraling coronavirus crisis.

“We have to assume there will be very serious consequences for our economy, which is why the free movement of goods is all the more important, because our European single market is based on the division of labor fractured all across Europe,” Merkel said.

“It is crucial that goods flow freely,” she added, noting that for example German carmakers heavily depend on supply chains in other EU countries.

During todays videoconference, “all parties said they want to address this problem,” Merkel said, adding that leaders agreed they “will do all they can that the waiting time at thRead More – Source