Wang Hejun, an official from the Ministry, pointed out that China will take the necessary measures to defend its rights and legitimate interests in light of U.S. President Donald Trump's signing of the documents making that decision official. The people said the exclusions for Canada and Mexico could be ended if talks to renegotiate NAFTA stall.
The tariff plan has angered USA allies, including Canada, Mexico, Britain and members of the European Union, who argue that their exports to the United States do not pose a threat to us national security. EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem said the EU was circulating among member states a list of USA goods to target with tariffs so it could respond quickly.
According to the Associated Press, the plan "rankled allies and raised prospects for a trade war".
"Thank you for confirming new tariffs won't have to be imposed on Australian steel & aluminium - good for jobs in Australia and in United States!" said the Australian premier as he retweeted the U.S. president's tweet. NAFTA talks are expected to resume early next month.
Looking outside of the steel industry, most studies estimate that a loss of jobs from industries that use steel and aluminum as inputs for their products could be far greater than the jobs boost for the metals industry. It's really an assault on our country.
American steel and aluminum workers have always been betrayed, Trump said, but "that betrayal is now over". He was joined by steel and aluminum workers holding white hard hats.
EUROFER chief Axel Eggert said "the national security justification the president has used - and the linking of these tariffs to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation funding - is an absurdity". The former real estate developer said politicians had for years lamented the decline in the industries, but nobody was willing to take action.
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The president has said the tariffs are needed to reinforce lagging American steel and aluminum industries and protect national security.
If Cohn rejoins the administration, Trump said, "I don't know if I can put him in the same position, though". That scenario, Tom Donohue said, would endanger the economic momentum from the GOP tax cuts and Trump's rollback of regulations.
"We just want fairness", he said.
The president also appeared to criticize China's alleged theft of intellectual property, saying, "The U.S.is acting swiftly on Intellectual Property theft".
While China accounts for just a small portion of US imports, the Trump administration has said it diverts its shipments of the metals through other countries on the way to the U.S.
Canada still can hope for a last minute exemption as it was done in 2002 when then US President George W. Bush had imposed a tariff on steel imports.
Last week Trump stunned the world - and his own aides - with an off-the-cuff announcement of his plan, even before White House lawyers judged the legality of the tariffs.
"The measure could have a grave impact on the economic relationship of Japan and the USA. and also on the global economy", said Foreign Minister Taro Kono, describing the move as "regrettable". "Steel is steel. You don't have steel, you don't have a country".