September 23, 2018

Trump discussed steel, aluminum tariffs with Argentina's Macri-White House

12 March 2018, 03:16 | Casey Mitchell

Trump discussed steel, aluminum tariffs with Argentina's Macri-White House

Trump discussed steel, aluminum tariffs with Argentina's Macri-White House

President Donald Trump signed proclamations Thursday slapping U.S. tariffs of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum from nearly every country, with the penalties snapping into effect in 15 days. To read the rest of "Trump rolling out big trade tariffs, sparing Mexico, Canada", an article by Associated Press writer Ken Thomas, please follow this link to the BDN online.

The tariff, due to take effect in 15 days, was aimed at protecting national security and American jobs, Mr Trump said. He suggested Australia and "other countries" might also be spared, a shift that could soften the global blow amid threats of retaliation by trading partners. The president has said the tariffs are an attempt to correct trade imbalances and create fair trading practices.

President Trump has made no secret of his dislike of the NAFTA trade agreement. It's really an assault on our country.

The administration clarified this week that Canada, where the USA gets most of its steel, would be exempt, as would Mexico.

The chamber said Mexico should not impose tariffs on countries and regions it had free trade agreements with, such as the European Union and Japan. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference that Japan's steel and aluminium shipments posed no threat to United States national security.

Cohn said he would resign shortly after he lost a fight over Trump's plans for hefty steel and aluminum import tariffs. But he also said the penalties could "go up or down depending on the country, and I'll have a right to drop out countries or add countries".

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Jack Thompson sent me four emails in the past hour telling me to call him, so I just did.

Ferriola, whose company is the largest producer of steel and steel-related products in the country, said he fully supports the tariffs. At another point, during a meeting with steel and aluminum executives, Trump urged Cohn to engage in a debate with U.S. Steel CEO Dave Burritt, according to two people familiar with the exchange and not authorized to discuss it publicly.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, appearing with Home Depot employees in Atlanta, warned of "unintended consequences". But it is uncommon, according to people familiar with the committee process, for a witness to tell lawmakers that he or she no longer has access to past accounts.

The EU insists that it is committed to open, global trade, and that Trump's tariffs are a protective measure to prop up USA industry that could undermine the worldwide trading system. And even as Trump approved the tariffs, 11 partners in the Asia-Pacific were in Santiago, Chile, to sign a multilateral trade deal embraced by president Barack Obama but rejected by Trump. Fox moderator Chris Wallace quoted sources that the tariff will raise the price of steel and aluminum used in auto manufacturing by $175 per vehicle.

The trip will be Trump's first to California since taking office.

Nations around the globe that were not excluded from the tariffs reacted with dismay.

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"We are friends, we are allies we work together", EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem said.

The EU has become increasingly exasperated with Trump's "America First" agenda, viewing it as a threat to the multilateral trade order that the US played a leading role in building after World War II. The EU, Brazil and Britain were also quick to launch broadsides against the tariffs, which are worth billions of dollars. Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono called the decision "extremely regrettable", predicting it could have a major impact on the economy and the relationship between the US and Japan, as well as the global economy.

Canada's ambassador to Washington dined this week with US national-security adviser H.R. McMaster; Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, and Transport Minister Marc Garneau all reached out to cabinet counterparts in recent days.

The White House is now clearly avoiding that kind of talk: "We will have ongoing discussions with Canada and Mexico", a senior White House official said in a pre-announcement briefing.

Early in Trump's term, Navarro at first was outmaneuvered by Cohn, the Goldman Sachs president-turned-Trump economic adviser.

@billshotenmp: "The US decision to increase tariffs raises the risk that steel bound for the US could be dumped here in Australia".

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