Free trade puts Republican megadonors on collision course with Trump

Sergio Conner
June 5, 2018

How, he wondered aloud, did Canada suddenly become a national security threat to the United States?

Prime minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference the USA tariffs were "totally unacceptable".

The British government issued its summary of the call first, contending May "raised the US decision to apply tariffs to European Union steel and aluminium imports".

According to a Reuters report, Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso called the us tariff actions "deeply deplorable". "There are better ways to negotiate trade deals than by punishing American consumers and businesses with higher cost", Phillips said.

Trump's decision to end tariff exemptions for Canada, Mexico and Europe (including France) comes only 37 days after Macron visited him in Washington and warned him that the protectionist move could have dire consequences. "We would not want our decisions to hurt workers in Canada, ' he said".

The country has, however, given foreign producers a slice of its market in past trade talks; doing so again in North American Free Trade Agreement talks would follow the trend but be politically controversial because it would once again shrink domestic producers' cut of the pie.

Trump's announcement provoked an outcry - and threat of retaliatory tariffs - from the leaders of the allied countries Trump is planning to hit with tariffs, with cries of imminent political and economic ramifications.

Economists, trade experts, and investors are all anxious that President Donald Trump's recent tariffs could be a problem for the USA economy.

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The tariffs were imposed Thursday morning on the United States' closest allies-Mexico, Canada and the European Union.

President Donald Trump's administration last week imposed US tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum from Canada - the No. 1 steel exporter to the United States - as well as on Mexico and the European Union.

Another trade war is brewing - one between President Trump and the Koch brothers.

In a statement issued by Canada, the G7 finance officials agreed that "decisive action is needed" on the tariff issue at a summit of G7 leaders next week in Charlevoix, Quebec.

The spokesperson said the government stands by its analysis that the total value of the goods subject to tariffs is 16.6 billion Canadian dollars.

"In response to these measures, Canada intends to impose surtaxes or similar trade-restrictive countermeasures against up to C$16.6 billion in imports of steel, aluminum, and other products from the U.S., representing the value of 2017 Canadian exports affected by the USA measures", Canada's government wrote on its official website.

The Financial Post led with the fact that the other six members - Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom - had issued a statement critical of recent USA actions.

"We still want to see what the measures themselves are, specifically we have been talking to the Irish government about the issue of bourbon being on the list because of the potential implications for the Scotch whisky industry and the Irish whiskey industry", he said.

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