Eli Ridder | The Post
Canada is working to avoid upcoming tariffs set to be installed due to the continued domestic priority effort by United States President Donald Trump, who announced the proposal on Thursday.
Ottawa was quick to respond by condemning the taxation from several top officials including the trade minister, foreign affairs minister and the prime minister, saying there will be retaliation.
Both Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and and cabinet minister Chrystia Freeland called Mr. Trump’s proposal “absolutely unacceptable”, with Mr. Trudeau saying on Friday he has reached out to the president over the issue in the past.
He warned of a “significant disruption” in the supply chain and said new tariffs would harm U.S. industry just as much as Canada’s steel sector.
“We will continue to engage with all levels of the American administration in the coming days so that they understand that this proposal is unacceptable,” Trudeau told budget promotion event in Barrie.
An official speaking on background to the CBC said Canada should be exempt from any tariffs from Washington due to the “highly integrated nature of North American steel market” and due to close defense ties between the two countries.
Finance Minister Bill Morneau spoke with U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on Thursday, according to several reports.
Mr. Morneau said he brought to Mr. Mnuchin’s attention the role Canada plays in ensuring U.S. industry has “access to the kind of products they need.”
The finance minister would not comment on whether the situation would escalate into a trade war, however, explaining he would not “hypothesize on what might or might not happen.”
The European Union has also not been shy in informing the United States of their disappointment.
U.S. motorcycles, bourbon and jeans could be among the targets of retaliatory duties, the continental bloc said on Friday.
More details to follow. Image of Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump from previous files.