Metal tariffs 'incomprehensible,' says Guajardo as trade war threatens

Metal tariffs 'incomprehensible,' says Guajardo as trade war threatens

Freeland is making the announcement alongside Prime Minister Justin Trudeau following word from the White House that the US will slap tariffs on Canadian, Mexican and European Union steel and aluminium as of midnight tonight. It represents an apparent breakdown in Trudeau's efforts to find common ground with the tough-talking president.

Financial markets appeared to agree with the tariffs, Trump said, pointing to new employment numbers released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday showing that the economy added 223,000 jobs and the unemployment rate dropping to 3.8 percent.

Business leaders in Canada and the USA have predicted dire economic consequences as a result of the decision.

"Let me be clear", Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said.

'These are two very different countries.

During a conference call early Thursday, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross played down the divisions.

Germany's Economy Minister said early on Friday (June 1) the European Union might look to coordinate its response with Canada and Mexico.

Canada, the largest supplier of steel to the United States, will impose tariffs covering C$16.6 billion ($12.8 billion) on imports from the U.S., including whiskey, orange juice, steel, aluminium and other products, Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said. Trump, Trudeau, and several other world leaders are scheduled to meet next week in Canada at the G-7 meeting.

The U.S. allies responded to the decision by threatening retaliatory duties on American goods, ranging from bourbon to blue jeans, and the European Union opened a case against the U.S.at the World Trade Organization on Friday.

Mexico and Canada renewed their commitment to the bare-knuckled NAFTA renegotiation after absorbing the blow of the Trump administration's decision to impose potentially debilitating new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

But he exempted Canada, Mexico and the European Union to buy time for negotiations - a reprieve that expired at midnight on Thursday.

United States to Continue Military Exercises in South China Sea, Pentagon Chief Says
The operation that was conducted on Sunday had been undergoing drills and planning for months on end. China sent two of its own warships to the area to warn the US vessels to leave, Beijing said.

Trump went back to fuming over the US trade deficits with other nations.

However, May has so far resisted calls to join some of her closest allies in speaking out against Trump, instructing UK's Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, to do it instead.

EU members have given broad support to a European Commission plan to set duties on 2.8 billion euros ($A4.3.billion) of USA exports if Washington ends the tariff exemption. "Do timber and lumber in USA?" The U.S. produced 785,000 metric tons of aluminum and imported 5 million tons previous year. And he repeated that while he was looking forward to continuing negotiations, the USA decision was based on national security grounds.

"It all depends on how the various parties react to the circumstances". The Trump administration is using an obscure section from a half-century-old trade law to impose the tariffs on national-security grounds.

EU, Canada and Mexico also draw up retaliatory measures to Washington's stinging steel and aluminium duties.

Now that the threat has become reality, many think Europe will wind up blinking, assenting to some concessions, having learned that Mr. Trump is prepared to go to war.

Congressional Republicans have already started raising the specter of job losses in their states.

"I believe the real challenge on NAFTA will be Mexico".

No other president ever brought it up. and it's gonna be done now, ' Trump said. He's urging all parties to respect their commitments, saying: "We always honor our words, and in that respect we expect our partners to honor their words as well".

But one Canada-watcher in Washington stressed there was no need for Canada to take Thursday's decision personally.

"This is Trump versus the world, rather than Trump versus Canada".

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