Canada Slaps More Levies On US Imports

- Jul 03, 2018-

US President Donald Trump shakes hands with Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) in a bilateral meeting during the G7 Summit in the Charlevoix town of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 8, 2018. [Photo/Agencies]

Canada began imposing tariffs Sunday on $12.6 billion in US goods as retaliation for the Trump administration's new taxes on Canadian steel and aluminum.

Some US products, mostly steel and iron, face 25 percent tariffs, the same penalty the United States slapped on imported steel at the end of May. Other US imports, from ketchup to pizza to dishwasher detergent, will face a 10 percent tariff as a tit-for-tat response to America's tax on imported aluminum.

In his speech on Sunday in Leamington, Ontario, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau thanked Canadians for standing united against US President Donald Trump's sanctions. He urged Canadians to "make their choices accordingly" in considering whether to buy American products.

Canada announced tariff countermeasures on Friday. Trudeau and Trump spoke late Friday.

The phone call between the two leaders was the first to be publicly disclosed since Trump blasted Trudeau as "very dishonest and weak" at the end of the Group of Seven leaders meeting in Canada earlier this month.

Trump has repeatedly suggested Canada was profiting from US trade, and his blistering comments after the G7 meeting drove bilateral relations to their lowest point in decades.

On Friday, Canada struck back at the Trump administration over US steel and aluminum tariffs, vowing to impose punitive measures on $12.6 billion worth of American goods until Washington relents.

During the call, Trudeau told Trump that Canada had no choice but to announce reciprocal countermeasures to the steel and aluminum tariffs, according to a separate statement issued by Canada late on Friday.

The two leaders agreed to stay in close touch on a way forward, the statement added.

Trudeau also expressed his condolences for the victims of the shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, the Canadian statement said.

Separately, Trudeau also spoke with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on Friday to discuss the Mexican elections on July 1. The two leaders also discussed the North American Free Trade(NAFTA) negotiations and agreed to continue working toward a mutually beneficial outcome.

Negotiations to modernize NAFTA started last August and were initially scheduled to finish by the end of December, but the three countries have yet to reach a deal.

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