Tuesday, 23 April, 2019

United Kingdom 'very disappointed' by Trump tariff plan, official says

Gary Cohn former chief economic adviser to the US president. Donald Trump’s tariff hikes will lead to rising protectionism even if they do not escalate into a full-fledged trade war and strengthen the anti-globalization forces across the world This time, China can fight back against tariffs
Deanna Wagner | 09 March, 2018, 03:15

More than 100 House Republicans wrote a letter to President Donald Trump asking him to rethink his proposed tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum.

Action that does not include exemptions risks retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports - not least by Canada and Europe - and complicates already tough talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

If the tariffs were imposed upon major global trading partners like the European Union, it's possible a tit-for-tat tax war could erupt in which major economies punish the USA for restricting trade.

The resignation of Gary Cohn, Mr Trump's chief economic adviser, appeared to signal the president's determination to impose steep tariffs on imported steel and aluminium.

Trump stunned his administration last week when he announced the tariffs after his advisors had been led to believe he was holding off (for now).

White House Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said earlier on Wednesday that the potential exemptions would be made on a "case by case" and "country by country" basis.

Asked at a news conference with the Swedish prime minister about high staff turnover, Trump said: "Many, many people want every single job. I think there are a lot more jobs in this country that are dependent on steel and aluminum as inputs, and we are going to end up costing more jobs because of the tariffs than will be saved, and that doesn't even factor into account the retaliatory tariffs that we may see Europe and China and other trading partners do, which could hurt farmers, manufacturers".

There are some indications from the White House that the tariff threat might continue to be lorded over Canada and Mexico as a negotiating weapon, in an effort to prod them into a new NAFTA deal.

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Farrell's 3-pointer with 13:55 left first ignited the closing run that, initially, Virginia Tech met shot-for-shot. Gibbs dug into that Tech lead and got the small pocket of Notre Dame fans believing this thing wasn't over.

In a tweet Wednesday, the president said the "US is acting swiftly on Intellectual Property theft". The Canadian dollar was down 0.21 percent to 1.29 per USA dollar. "We cannot see how the European Union, friends, allies in North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, can be a threat to security in the USA", she said.

Asian stocks opened lower Wednesday amid fears the American president would embark on a more protectionist drive, despite U.S. stocks finishing higher partly due to expectations for a detente in the Korean peninsula but with investors still struggling to discern whether Trump would follow through on restrictive trade measures.

The letter said "tariffs are taxes that make US businesses less competitive and USA consumers poorer", and "any tariffs that are imposed should be created to address specific distortions caused by unfair trade practices in a targeted way while minimizing negative consequences in American businesses and consumers".

The White House schedule released late Wednesday didn't list a tariff announcement for Thursday.

The chief of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, on Wednesday in a European radio interview, warned of a global trade war, predicting the US tariffs could lead to "a drop in growth, a drop in trade, and it will be fearsome".

Trump is pushing the tariffs as a national security necessity, but also as a way to revitalize the US steel industry, which employs around 140,000 people.

Following the news on Cohn, the United States dollar weakened and stock futures fell more than one per cent, with analysts citing increased uncertainty about economic agenda.

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