Trump Canada tariffs: Canadian government overshoots goal

Javier Stokes
June 5, 2018

Trump had initially imposed the new tariffs in March - saying a reliance on imported metals threatened national security - but he had previously exempted Canada, Mexico and the European Union to buy time for negotiations.

The escalating trade conflict comes as months-long talks toward reworking the North American Free Trade Agreement appear to have collapsed. If not, an all-out trade war may become unavoidable.

When asked about the significance of the past week for the Liberals' future electoral prospects, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said in an interview that the government believes it got elected because people wanted it to make decisions to help Canadians feel more successful.

Gregg Re is an editor for Fox News.

"Don't blame Trump. Blame China, blame Europe, blame NAFTA".

Mexico also announced it would target several USA goods, including some laminated steel, pipe products, and agricultural products including fruits and cheese.

Later today, the prime minister will be meeting with The Canadian Steel Producers Association.

Ostensibly, the tariffs - which have also been applied to metals from the European Union and Japan - are created to protect US national security.

"Here, the European Union is claiming that the Americans have implemented trade restrictions - in this case, the steel and aluminum tariffs - that violate the rules of the global system", Chad Bown, senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for worldwide Economics told All Things Considered.

Mnuchin also noted that when it came to the other countries' views on US trade actions that "there was clearly a consensus from the rest of them", according to the Wall Street Journal.

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Trump is also considering $50 billion tariffs on Chinese goods.

Business leaders in Canada and the US predicted dire economic consequences as result of the decision, which was derided on both sides of the Atlantic.

"If there is a risk of reducing their production or a risk of not being able to export as much, we will be there to support them in making sure that they maintain the jobs that they have in that sector", economic development minister Dominique Anglade told an aluminum summit.

The decision was announced by US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross the day before.

US businesses are bracing for the impact of a potential trade battle between the USA and some of its closest allies.

In Canada, Trudeau announced what he called "directly reciprocal" tariffs targeting US products like steel and toilet paper.

The other finance ministers are urging Mnuchin to speak with President Trump to "communicate their unanimous concern and disappointment" ahead of next week's meeting between the member leaders.

But after totaling the value of Canada's list of United States goods subject to tariffs using import data, Business Insider found that the value of these exports is equal to roughly just over $15 billion USA dollars, or 19 billion Canadian dollars. Mexico is the largest buyer of the United States pork by volume. "It puts us in a position where we're defending first principles, which is Canadians' rights to a strong and healthy economy for their families".

"We're aware that we have to work collectively and collaboratively with the United States and that, quite frankly, has been my point with the president since the very beginning", Trudeau said.

In American media over the weekend, Trudeau called the tariffs "insulting".

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