Published: Mon, June 04, 2018
Global | By Craig Ferguson

US to impose tariffs on steel, aluminum from European Union soon

US to impose tariffs on steel, aluminum from European Union soon

Europe is bracing for the United States to slap restrictions Thursday on imported steel and aluminum, a move that could provoke retaliatory tariffs and inflame trade tensions. But it granted an exemption to the European Union and other US allies; that reprieve expires Friday.

"The Trump people are deluded if they think Canada will offer additional concessions just because of this", he said.

"The EU believes these unilateral US tariffs are unjustified and at odds with World Trade Organization rules".

And he repeated his inaccurate claim that Canada runs a trade surplus with the United States.

He said the focus now is to use the threat of retaliatory measures to pressure the United States into reconsidering its own tariffs before any negative economic impact actually materialises.

"Will the rest of Europe turn their attention to Germany and say look, Trump has a problem with you and we are suffering the consequences".

Canada, the largest supplier of steel to the U.S., will impose tariffs covering C$16.6 billion ($12.8 billion) on United States imports, including whiskey, orange juice, steel, aluminium and other products.

While the imposing of the tariffs is perceived in the US as a mean of "negotiating" with other counties, those targeted see them as a threat and effectively a declaration of trade war.

The purchases Washington wants Beijing to commit to are aimed at reducing the $375 billion US trade deficit with China.

That summit, which will be hosted by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, will also mark Trump's first visit to Canada as president.

The U.S., Canada and Mexico have been holding talks to renegotiate the deal.

At the same time, Canadian lumber exports south of the border have decreased, impacting 2,000 to 3,000 jobs that would have otherwise been created, said Michael Burt, executive director of Industry Trends at the Conference Board of Canada.

"Unilateral responses and threats over trade war will solve nothing of the serious imbalances in the world trade".

Canada and Mexico, which are embroiled in talks with the United States to update the North American Free Trade Agreement, responded to the USA move by announcing levies of their own on a variety of American exports.

"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.

Cecilia Malmstrom, the European Union trade commissioner, announced the European Union would be seeking to implement a number of retaliatory tariffs on American products by June 20.

Reuters reported last Sunday that Qualcomm was expecting to meet this week in Beijing with China's antitrust regulators in a final push to secure clearance for the deal, but that meeting never materialized and the San Diego-based firm is now waiting to see the outcome of the Ross talks before officials travel to China, a person familiar with the matter said on Saturday.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the tariffs - 25 per cent on imported steel and 10 per cent on aluminum- would take effect Friday. A handful of other US trading partners, including South Korea, Australia, Argentina and Brazil, previously won permanent exemptions by agreeing to quotas on their exports.

"We regret that our common work together at the level of the G7 has been put at risk by the decisions taken by the American administration on trade and on tariffs".

The tariffs his administration has imposed - 25 percent on imported steel, 10 percent on aluminum from Canada, Mexico and the European Union - threaten to drive up prices for American consumers and companies and heighten uncertainty for businesses and investors around the globe.

Like this: