Monday, 17 December, 2018

Congress members from Colorado 'disappointed' with Trump's tariffs

The EU Strikes Back       Some 2.8 billion euros of U.S. goods are targeted in retaliatory tariff              Source European Commission The EU Strikes Back Some 2.8 billion euros of U.S. goods are targeted in retaliatory tariff Source European Commission
Gerardo Duncan | 11 March, 2018, 03:03

According to the Washington Post: "Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, said that if Trump goes ahead with the proposed tariffs of 25 percent on USA imports of steel and 10 percent on aluminum, the European Union will respond by imposing tariffs on American products such as Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Kentucky bourbon and Levi's blue jeans".

Acting under a Cold War statute that gives United States presidents the power to impose tariffs on imports if they threaten the country's national security, Mr Trump said the U.S. would begin applying tariffs on imports from everywhere but Canada and Mexico. Trump said no one should be surprised, as it was a campaign promise.

European industry associations called on Malmstrom to respond if the EU was subjected to the tariffs, saying they would hit the steel and aluminium sectors hard.

Seko said Japan's steel exports to the United States, used for automobile manufacturing, are "contributing greatly to the US industry and (the creation of) jobs".

The EU said it was prepared to respond to any tariffs with counter-measures against USA products such as Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Levi's jeans and bourbon.

"American companies have not been treated fairly and some American companies frankly have taken advantage of it and gone to other countries and developed in Mexico, massive automobile plants, taking our jobs away and taking our companies down to Mexico to make the cars and then they send them right across the border without tax, without anything", he said.

"The president's decision today to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports is disappointing, economically regressive and counterproductive", Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James said in a statement.

Reaction in Maryland, where manufacturers rely heavily on steel imports according to a recent study, was largely negative. "Our industries have been targeted for years and years by unfair foreign practices", Mr Trump said on Thursday, citing "the decimation of entire communities" and declaring "that's going to stop".

"If you look at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, where Germany pays one percent and we are paying 4.2 percent of a much bigger GDP - that's not fair", he said.

Business leaders, meanwhile, continued to sound the alarm about the potential economic fallout from tariffs, with the president and CEO of the US Chamber of Commerce raising the spectre of a global trade war.

The action being taken, the president said, follows a nine-month investigation by the Department of Commerce, documenting a growing crisis in United States steel and aluminium production that threatens the security of the country.

Non-US governments, and particularly democracies, "are under enormous pressure not to be seen to be caving to the Trump administration", because of his unpopularity overseas, said Timothy Meyer, an global trade specialist and law professor at Vanderbilt University.

American steel and aluminum makers are rebooting stalled plants and calling back hundreds of workers with the expectation that President Donald Trump's proposed tariffs will soon be enacted.

"Caterpiller start having to layoff exponentially more workers, that's going to be more people in pain - different groups of people, perhaps", Shea said. "Global steel producers who have previously exported to the U.S. no longer can, because the prices are too high as a result of the tariffs", he added.

The "wonderfully flexible document" is created to accommodate US security relationships with other countries and provide "ironclad" protections for the industry, he said.

"Protectionism, tariffs never really work", Fox added.

The European Commission had already warned on Wednesday that if the United States went ahead with its plan, it would retaliate with increased tariffs on American goods such as Bourbon whiskey, Levis jeans, Florida orange juice and peanut butter.

He has left open an avenue for potentially modifying or removing a tariff under certain conditions for individual countries, it said. We will always stand up for Canadian workers and Canadian businesses.

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