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US House speaker urges Donald Trump to drop new tariffs plan

13 March 2018

Trump announced March 1 that the United States planned to impose 25 percent of tariff on steel imports and 10 percent for aluminum, as these imports threaten the USA national security, Xinhua reported.

"I don't think you're going to have a trade war", Trump told reporters. He characterized rhetoric like Lange's as "scare tactics by the people who want the status quo".

Trade is one of the most glaring policy disagreements between Trump and Republican lawmakers.

The current round of Nafta talks, which focus on updating the 24-year old treaty, are due to finish on Monday and have achieved little. He says domestic metals production is essential to national security.

Given their close trade relationships with the USA and large amount of steel exports, both countries were hoping to for exclusions from the restrictions.

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Here's how Trump described it. "How do we make sure that we have a fair and level playing field?" But it remains to be seen if Trump's explanation is merely simple or simplistic.

Trump has come under fire from worldwide allies and lawmakers at home for the tariffs, which he said would be 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum. The European Union, Canada and China are among those threatening to retaliate with tit-for-tat duties if Trump goes ahead with the steel and aluminium tariffs.

White House officials have said that the tariffs will be applied globally and without exceptions for allies. Eventually, the tab gets passed down to the consumer in the form of higher prices. "Highly restrictive. Mexico must do much more on stopping drugs from pouring into the US".

Trump administration officials frequently refer to the deficit in goods alone, excluding the offset from dominant U.S. services exports of things like banking and insurance. When services - not jut goods - are figured in, the USA has a trade surplus with the Great White North.

So not only is the economics of what's happening confusing, so are the politics.

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Economists warn that a protracted trade war would be seriously detrimental to the United States economy and likely lead to job losses and possibly even a recession.

Currently, the US, Canada and Mexico are renegotiating NAFTA.

But what is the cause of the US trade deficit?

While China produces almost half of the world's steel, the US only imports roughly two per cent of its steel from the country. Is it the result of both? Stock markets around the world are spooked.

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US House speaker urges Donald Trump to drop new tariffs plan