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Canada’s response marks a sort of departure from a host of tariffs announced by Ottawa in May 2018, which targeted up to $ 16.6 billion in steel, aluminum and a wide range of other unrelated products in retaliation for US taxes. These tariffs, similar to comparable tariffs leveled by the United States, were eventually dropped in 2019.
Trump’s decision to relaunch the trade war increases the pressure on the Liberal government led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which has already suffered a moderate drop in public polls amid the WE controversy.
Some observers said on Friday that the recent escalation in Canada-U.S. Tensions is not entirely unusual, as trade disputes between the two countries have persisted for decades. Canada, the United States and Mexico have fought for years under Chapter 19 of the old NAFTA, which provides a dispute settlement mechanism for anti-dumping and countervailing claims similar to those made by Trump this week. .
“It’s not like it’s unusual,” Warner said of the recent scuffle.
Will people even notice
The Trump administration has claimed for years that Canada has flooded the U.S. market with crude steel and aluminum products, which in turn has lowered market prices that benefit U.S. producers. Canadian officials reject these claims.
“Canada took advantage of us,” Trump said in a speech Thursday, when he announced the tariffs would be reimposed. U.S. tariffs go into effect August 16.
Many American lobby groups, including the American Chamber of Commerce, have warned against the tariffs, saying it will only increase the costs of American products like beer and home appliances.
In a statement Thursday night, Freeland called the levies “unjustified and unacceptable”. Canadian aluminum supplies “have bolstered US national security and have done so for decades through unprecedented cooperation between our two countries,” she said.