Feb 28, 2017 07:50 PM EST

United States Loses To China As Germany’s Most Important Trading Partner

The United States is no longer the top trading partner of Germany, a development that is expected to be well received by the German government that criticizes President Donald Trump's proposed trading policies. China took the place of the United States as the biggest trading partner of Germany, according to a report by The Times of Malta.

China became the most important trading partner of Germany in 2016, with exports and imports totaling €170 billion, according to data from Federal Statistics office. The Asian country was followed by France with €167 billion. Meanwhile, the United States' total amount of exports and imports with Germany amounted to €165 billion, making the country fall to third place.

If the United States president does not change his protectionist views on trading, the ranking could stay as is for many years to come. Jobs & Hire previously reported that several European countries are anxious about Trump's presidency given his views on the economy.

The BRICS Post reported that German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been working on strengthening Germany's relationship with China. The chancellor has visited the Asian country in June 2016. The visit was fruitful as it resulted in the signing of about 96 trade agreements totaling $15 billion.

The stronger tie between China and Germany is not altogether unexpected. Germany's government has been vocal about its views on Trump's "America First" policy. As soon as Trump took the presidential seat in the White House, he signed an executive order that makes the United States exit and reviews important trade agreements.

The rise of protectionism in the United States could allow China fill the spaces in the trading industry. Trump's protectionist plan goes against the idea of global cooperation that several countries are trying to achieve.

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