Canada strikes back at US with tariffs

Canada 'will not back down' over US metals tariffs

Chrystia Freeland, Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs, speaks during her visit to Stelco in Hamilton, Ontario, Friday, June 29, 2018.

The former's tariffs on US products such as apples, cranberries, whiskey, pork products and cheese were introduced on June 5, while the 28-country European bloc introduced a levy on more than $3 billion worth of USA goods on June 29. The duties will be 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on everything else. Trump and Trudeau have clashed recently, with the president warning Canada will pay for it.

Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs, visited Stelco in Hamilton on Friday, June 29, 2018 where she met with employees in the cold rolling plant and announced the government's latest efforts in response to USA tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum.

It was their first direct conversation since Trump tweeted that Trudeau was "weak" and "dishonest" after leaving the G-7 meetings in Quebec earlier this month.

"I fought hard for them and ultimately they will not pay tariffs selling into the European Union, which has hurt us badly on trade, down $151 Billion".

The taxes on items including ketchup, lawn mowers and motor boats amount to $12.6 billion.

"We're ready, really, for pretty much everything", she said, pointing out that Canadian-U.S. relations will likely have further "moments of drama".

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The direct economic impact from the USA metal tariffs and Canada's retaliation - either in terms of economic activity or inflation - are expected to be small. The product will now be hit with a 10 percent duty. "Canada has no choice but to retaliate with a measured reciprocal dollar-for-dollar response".

Whiskey is another item on the list, which comes from Tennessee and Kentucky, the latter being the home state of Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell.

"It's regrettable that we have to engage in this kind of tit-for-tat trade war, but it's been forced on us by Mr. Trump", Toronto-based trade lawyer Lawrence Herman said in a phone interview.

"I think that prediction has been borne out", she said.

Canada and the US are among the world's two largest trading partners with an estimated $ 673.9 billion worth of goods and services exchanged in 2017, with the US scoring a small surplus ($ 8.4 billion), according to the US Trade Representative's office. "My concern, as an industry player that exports 90 per cent of what it produces to the US, is viewing the progressive destruction of my value chains in the U.S".

"[The North American Free Trade Agreement] won't be solved overnight", the source said.

Experts from a variety of vulnerable industries painted a dire portrait of the future under a Canada-U.S. trade war during a Commons trade committee hearing earlier this week - particularly the prospect of auto tariffs, which Flavio Volpe of the Auto Parts Manufacturer's Association described as "carmageddon". Ken Neumann, the United Steelworkers' national director for Canada, told lawmakers this week he was "very concerned that the Canadian industry has already been harmed by the one-month delay". The Canadian department of finance released a broad list of American goods May 31 that Ottawa said would face retaliatory tariffs valued at some $16.6 billion if the American policy was not repealed.

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