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Trump charges Ross with pushing European Union to lower tariffs, European Union demurs

13 March 2018

Fox criticised the unilateral imposition of U.S. tariffs, which will impose a 25 per cent duty on steel imports and a 10 per cent tax on aluminium imports, and said that they "have weak foundations in worldwide law".

Ross 'will be speaking with representatives of the European Union about eliminating the large Tariffs and Barriers they use against the U.S.A.,' Trump tweeted. But he gave Canada and Mexico a reprieve: He exempted them from the tax temporarily - provided that they agree to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement to Trump's liking.

The Trade Partnership, a consulting firm, estimates that the tariffs would increase employment in the USA steel and aluminum sector by about 33,000 jobs but cost 179,000 jobs in the rest of the economy.

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The US tariff for cars, at 2.5 per cent, was lower than the European Union rate of 10 per cent, but its rate of up to 25 per cent on trucks was higher.

In October 2017, Mexico extended, for the fourth time, a 15% tariff imposed on imports of slab, hot-rolled coil, heavy plate, cold-rolled coil and wire rod to protect the domestic steel sector. Ryan's complaints about tariffs aside, he still believes in surgical action (whatever that means) against China. Trump's chief economic adviser, Gary Cohn, is resigning, reportedly because of his oppositions to the tariffs.

The additional money that USA consumers spent on tires reduced their spending on other retail goods, indirectly lowering employment in the retail industry. This go-it-alone action by the United States will not help. He added: "Some of them are so-called allies, but they're not allies on trade". In any case, "if the issue is a security issue on steel and aluminum, I fail to see how the auto issue fits into that picture".

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Lighthizer, a loyalist to Trump's "America First" mantra, made no official comment after the talks, but the three sides did agree on a series of next steps to address the oversupply worldwide of steel and other materials, mainly by China. Canada, along with Brazil and South Korea, is a major steel supplier.

"A lot of steel mills are now opening up because of what I did", he said. Agricultural groups express alarm that their products are likely to be hard hit by retaliatory actions, while automobile manufacturers and companies that rely on aluminum cans - for beer and soup, for example - have warned the tariffs will raise costs for consumers. And yet they send their cars and everything else back into the US, he said. We are committed to working with the Administration to find a long-term solution within the new framework that supports jobs in the USA auto industry and across the supply chain.

Those messages are resonating among lawmakers in Congress, where Republicans in particular who have long shied away from any sort of fight with the White House are coming out forcefully against the tariffs. "If there is a violation, then we will seek consultations", he said. "I think our allies and others need to know that there is some pushback here".

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Trump charges Ross with pushing European Union to lower tariffs, European Union demurs