Friday, 19 October, 2018

United States isolated at G7 meeting as tariffs prompt retaliation

Trump's warning to Canada: Fair NAFTA deal, or no deal at all Trump takes aim at Canada after Trudeau's retaliation over new US tariffs
Faye Gross | 04 June, 2018, 00:19

In a statement late Thursday, Trump said a message had been conveyed to Trudeau earlier in the day that the United States "will agree to a fair deal, or there will be no deal at all".

Trump on Saturday took to Twitter to complain about the higher tariffs charged by some US trading partners under World Trade Organization agreements.

Trump tweeted: "Canada has treated our Agricultural business and Farmers very poorly for a very long period of time. I think that we've had a massive effort on tax reform in the United States which has had a incredible impact on the USA economy", Mnuchin said.

The dragging on of the NAFTA talks was a key reason behind the USA move to target Canada and Mexico, but given the importance of that trade agreement to the continent's economy, neither US neighbour was deterred.

Mexico, Canada, EU and China announced they will retaliate against the United States with tariffs of their own.

The memo, citing outside studies, adds the possible job losses from tariffs both threatened and enacted by the administration, plus a possible USA withdrawal from NAFTA, the trade agreement with Canada and Mexico.

Canada retaliated for the tariffs Thursday with $16.6 billion worth of "countermeasures" that hit a range of products from flat-rolled steel to playing cards, while Mexico also plans tariffs on a variety of USA products, including flat steel.

He also imposed a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports.

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"The idea that we [Canada] are somehow a national security threat to the United States is quite frankly insulting and unacceptable", the Canadian prime minister said.

Prime Minister Trudeau says he will work with companies hit hard by what he calls "ridiculous" tariffs. "So it's not like the trade is imbalanced against the US favor on this one", Trudeau said.

Later this week, Trump is due to visit Canada for the Trudeau-hosted G7 summit, which will take place at a remote luxury resort in La Malbaie, Quebeca, and where he will meet with leaders of Germany, Italy, France, UK and Japan.

Canadian officials and much of USA industry consider this a poison pill and Trudeau said no meeting occurred as a result.

"There are better ways to help American workers and consumers".

"We must find a way to get out of this", German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz told reporters following the meeting.

Mr Trump has said the tariffs are needed to protect United States steel and aluminium industries vital to the nation's security.

Juncker said that the European Union "believes these unilateral U.S. tariffs are unjustified and at odds with World Trade Organization rules". Mr Trudeau said Canada would respond with dollar-for-dollar retaliatory tariffs, and said a proposed meeting with Mr Trump to potentially secure a Nafta deal collapsed after Vice-President Mike Pence called and insisted the meeting was conditional on adding a sunset clause.

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