By Selina Stoller, Summit Consumer Receivables Acquisitions, LLC
President Trump ramped up economic pressure across the globe over the weekend.
On Thursday, the White House formally announced tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium. According to Politico, this move has angered some trading partners and left some members of the Republican party threatening to stop the tariffs through legislation.
Trump’s did decide to exempt Canada and Mexico from the 25 percent steel and 10 percent aluminium import tariffs and allow other countries to avoid penalties if they negotiate a deal to address U.S. national security concerns.
“The European Union, wonderful countries who treat the U.S. very badly on trade, are complaining about the tariffs on Steel & Aluminum,” he posted on Twitter. “If they drop their horrific barriers and tariffs on U.S. products going in, we will likewise drop ours. Big Deficit. If not, we Tax Cars etc. FAIR!” he tweeted.
The uncertainty has seemingly spooked the stock market and spurred protests. Many are concerned consumer prices will rise because businesses will be forced to pay more for equipment and materials while facing retaliatory tariffs overseas.
Exemptions for Canada and Mexico are contingent on the three countries reaching what the U.S. views as a favorable deal renegotiating NAFTA in continuing talks. Every other country will be required to negotiate a separate deal with U.S. Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer, to avoid the tariffs – which are scheduled to take effect in less than two weeks.
A USTR spokeswoman said last week that “any country with which we have a security relationship is welcome to discuss with the United States alternative ways to address our national security concerns with respect to steel and aluminum imports,” adding: “If we arrive at a satisfactory alternative means to address our concerns, the president may remove or modify the restrictions.”
A number of countries are threatening retaliation if they are hit with the tariffs. The EU compiled a list of products, valued at more than 2.8 billion euros, that includes everything from lipstick to kidney beans to motorboats it would hit with its own 25 percent duties, while Japan and South Korea have threatened a challenge at the World Trade Organization.
- 12 Mar, 2018
- Josh Smith