Daily Management Review

Washington's Steel & Aluminum Tariffs: Allies Take Strong Responsive Measures


06/01/2018




Investors’ fears of a global trade war were stoked after retaliation by Canada and Mexico to United States’ decision to impose steel and aluminum import tariff and the European Union also got6 its own reprisals ready to against its trading ally.
 
It could be possible the EU could coordinate its response against the US together with Mexico and Canada, said Germany’s Economy Minister early on Friday.
 
The import tariffs on the three largest trade allies of the US – Canada, Mexico and the EU, was announced by US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. The announcement ended all speculation about a possible exemption of these trading partners of the US from the tariffs while also indicating that the US is ready to take a tough stance in trade negotiations.
 
The tariffs that were first proposed by US President Donald Trump in March has been the major cause of concern for global markets and has resulted in condemnation from Republicans as well as US’s main business lobbying group.
 
“We look forward to continued negotiations, both with Canada and Mexico on the one hand, and with the European Commission on the other hand, because there are other issues that we also need to get resolved,” Ross said.
 
There was swift response from Canada and Mexico – both of which are engaged in negotiations with the US over the possible changes in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). On the other hand, the EU could get together with Canada and Mexico was announced by German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier.
 
“We want open markets, free markets but we have to convince the U.S. administration,” Altmaier told German television.
 
“We tried to do it through negotiation and we will now do it by standing together and formulating a common European answer, possibly working more closely with Mexico and Canada,” he said, adding he hoped this would make Trump rethink.
 
Products like whiskey, orange juice, steel, aluminum and other products imported from the US would be included in a list that Canada wants to impose tariffs on worth C$16.6 billion ($12.8 billion), said the country’s Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland. Canada is the biggest exporter of steel to the United States.
 
“The American administration has made a decision today that we deplore, and obviously is going to lead to retaliatory measures, as it must,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a with Freeland.
 
Trump, late on Thursday, said that the days of the United States being taken advantage of on trade were over, in reference to the NAFTA negotiations, in a statement.
 
“The United State will agree to a fair deal, or there will be no deal at all,” Trump said.
 
“Equivalent” measures would be taken against the tariffs on a wide range of U.S. farm and industrial products, said Mexico in its response.
 
Mexico’s Economy Ministry said that until the U.S. government eliminates its tariffs, the country will continue with the measures that would be targeted at pork legs, apples, grapes and cheese in addition to US steel and other products.
 
(Source:www.reuters.com)






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