G7 allies prepare for clash over tariffs with Trump at leaders' summit

Posted June 03, 2018

Canada plans to slam retaliatory tariffs on $12.8 billion worth of us exports and contest the steel and aluminum tariffs under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), per Reuters.

Companies around the world have expressed concern about the tariffs and the risk that it could escalate into a trade war, in which both sides hit each other with tit-for-tat measures.

America's "playing a risky game" which risks harming the EU's economic recovery.

The products would be hit if the WTO rules that the USA steel and aluminum tariffs are illegal.

The American exports targeted in the initial wave of European Union retaliatory tariffs are worth roughly €2.8 billion ($3.3 billion) annually, according to European Union officials.

"Donald Trump's haphazard and reckless plan to impose tariffs on Canada and the European Union is an absolute disaster that will cause unnecessary economic pain to farmers, manufacturers and consumers in Vermont and throughout the country".

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In the end, "this fight is not going to be resolved through diplomacy or at the G7 next week; it's going to be political developments in the United States", he added, noting that Canadian tariffs on USA consumer goods aimed to sway voters in key districts in the upcoming U.S. mid-term elections.

According to, the current trade trend is destroying the U.S. steel and aluminum sectors.

WASHINGTON/BRUSSELS Canada, Mexico and the European Union retaliated against USA tariffs on steel and aluminium with levies on billions of dollars of USA goods - from orange juice and whiskey to blue jeans and Harley Davidson bikes.

China's exports have mushroomed since joining the World Trade Organisation in 2001, making it the world's second-largest economy.

May said the USA should immediately rethink its decision, in what seems to be her first comment since the imposition of the tariff 24 hours ago. "From the beaches of Normandy to the mountains of Afghanistan, we have fought and died together", Trudeau said in a Thursday speech. Exemptions expired for Canada, Mexico and European Union countries on Friday, while Japanese metals producers have been paying the levies since March 23.

United States companies, too, have warned about the negative impact of the tariffs which will raise their costs.

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Canadian authorities said they would take retaliatory steps, responding to the U.S. metal tariffs, according to government sources, as quoted by Canadian TV channel Global News.

Meanwhile, the White House on Thursday night released a statement from Trump saying of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA): "Earlier today, this message was conveyed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada: 'The United States. will agree to a fair deal, or there will be no deal at all'". Canada unveiled a package of counter-tariffs on United States imports valued at Can$16.6 billion (US$12.8 billion).

The US move drew a string of furious responses from Canadian President Justin Trudeau, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron.

"This is protectionism, pure and simple", said Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission.

US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that no reprisals over the measure will have an impact on the American economy.

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