Canada, EU retaliate against U.S. tariffs as trade war looms

Key U.S. economic allies are firing back with retaliatory trade measures in response to the Trump administration’s move to impose steep tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.

Canada’s government on Thursday announced plans to levy tariffs on products including American-made steel and aluminum, effective July 1. That policy will continue so long as the U.S. tariffs remain in force.

The White House has said the tariffs — 25 percent duties on steel and 10 percent on aluminum shipments from Canada, EU member states and Mexico — are necessary to safeguard U.S. national security.

In announcing his country’s response, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it was “inconceivable” that “Canada could be considered a national security threat to the United States,” noting that U.S. fighter planes and tanks contain Canadian steel.

Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, said the European Union also will apply news tariffs on American goods, with the trading bloc signaling it would target products made in states represented by key Republican leaders. The EU has said it would respond with tariffs on $3.3 billion in American imports as early as June 20.

“The U.S. now leaves us with no choice but to proceed with a [World Trade Organization] dispute settlement case and with the imposition of additional duties on a number of imports from the U.S. We will defend the Union’s interests, in full compliance with international trade law,” Juncker said in a statement.

In March, the EU made public a 10-page list of possible targets. The extensive lineup includes an array of agricultural products, including rice and tobacco, as well as automobiles and motorcycles, whiskey, paper products, shoes, and blue jeans.

© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc.. All Rights Reserved.

Categories: Business

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *