Theresa May Condemns Trump’s Steel, Aluminium Tariff

Fredrick Soto
June 4, 2018

The complaint against the United States has been planned since March when Trump first announced plans to hit Europe and other allies with the metals tariff.

Trudeau said he spoke with US President Donald Trump last week and offered to fly to Washington and sit down with him to hammer out the "final details of NAFTA because there were broad lines of a decent win-win-win deal on the table".

"The US measures are a protectionist intervention in global trade and run counter to the principles of the World Trade Organization", the body said in a statement, сalling for a swift WTO decision on challenges to the tariffs. Ross said there was "no longer a very precise date when they may be concluded and therefore (Canada and Mexico) were added into the list of those who will bear tariffs".

"The EU is a peace project, including on trade", she said, pointing to the numerous trade agreements the EU is signing. European officials argue that tit-for-tat tariffs will hurt growth on both sides of the Atlantic and Canada said before the announcement that it would respond in kind.

She added that "the economic recovery that we have seen lately, notably in the European Union, but also globally, risks of course to be diminished by this". But the USA and China both propose justifying tariffs under domestic law, rather than following established WTO procedures, which could undermine the WTO's ability to mediate.

The tariffs, set to take effect at midnight, happened to coincide with the Cansec trade show, in which numerous world's largest defence companies descend on Ottawa each year to pitch their wares to government.

The Prime Minister's Office said they "all agreed to continue to defend the Canadian steel and aluminum industry from unwarranted tariffs and to stand up for the best interests of all Canadian workers and businesses".

But he saw as "a very worrying development" Washington's justification that the measures were needed for reasons of national security.

Malmstrom said over-production from China, not Europe, was to blame for the glut of steel that prompted the United States action.

"We are alienating all of our friends and partners at a time when we could really use their support", said Wendy Cutler, a former USA trade negotiator who is now vice president at the Asia Society Policy Institute.

The trade actions have opened the U.S.to criticism that it's burning bridges at a time when Trump is seeking to rid North Korea of nuclear weapons and help stabilize the Middle East. On the other hand, if the tariffs result in job losses and the economy slows, the Fed might want to ease the pace of rate hikes.

"We have a huge problem with the American government, with the White House", Moisi said.

The defence industry in both countries are easily among some of the world's largest steel and aluminum consumers; indeed, it was hard to find a spot on the convention floor where a firm wasn't showing off a tank or ship made of steel or a plane made of aluminum.

Tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to the US can help local producers of the metals by making foreign products more expensive. USA trading partners had demanded that the exemptions be extended or made permanent.

Canada and the US are closely integrated trading partners and Thursday's moves could cripple industries, including the auto sector, where supply chains are interconnected and goods pass back and forth across the border several times before they are finished. "That is exactly what happened in the 30s", Macron said.

The World Trade Organisation's former chief, Pascal Lamy, also said the damage would likely be limited in concrete terms.

But Macron said those "who waged bilateral trade wars. saw an increase in prices and an increase in unemployment".

"Our steel and aluminium industries are hugely important to the United Kingdom, but they also contribute to USA industry including in defence projects which bolster U.S. national security." she said. Dombrovskis reiterated the European Union position during the G7 meeting.

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