By Foo Yun Chee
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Building fences and barriers will hurt economies and drive up prices, Europe’s antitrust chief said on Friday, days after U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order to erect a wall on the southern U.S. border with Mexico.
People who put their faith in fences instead of open markets are going about it the wrong way, European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told a conference in Copenhagen.
“Those defenses will not help. They’ll only weaken our economies and increase prices for consumers, without giving people any more control over their own lives,” she said, without referring to Trump directly.
“But when people have the sense that markets aren’t listening to their needs, then we shouldn’t be surprised if they start to look for radical alternatives.”
Vestager riled the previous U.S. administration when she ordered iPhone maker Apple
She is also investigating other major U.S. companies, such as Internet search giant Google
U.S. online retailer Amazon
(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee, editing by David Evans)