losangelesnewstoday.com May 20, 2018

Trump Trade War - South Korea exempted from steel tariffs

05 May 2018, 01:35 | Katrina Lee

Trump to extend steel, aluminum tariff relief to some allies — but not all

As steel tariffs squeeze U.S. businesses uncertainty threatens economic growth

The prolonged exemptions for Canada and Mexico come as the Trump administration is working to renegotiate the North America Free Trade Agreement among the three countries.

The White House announced the decisions shortly before the temporary exemptions were due to expire but did not provide any details on the terms of the agreements reached.

"It's dawning on foreign leaders that decades of warm relations with the U.S. carry little weight with a president dismissive of diplomatic norms and hostile toward the ground rules of global trade", the paper notes.

However EU leaders seemed less confident despite recent bilateral meetings between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron with President Trump.

"The U.S. decision prolongs market uncertainty, which is already affecting business decisions", the EC said. "The EU should be fully and permanently exempted from these measures, as they can not be justified on the grounds of national security".

Last month, Trump directed the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to assess a plan to impose $100 billion in new trade tariffs on China.

Trump tweeted on Tuesday that there was "great potential" for the U.S. in addressing the trade disparities with other countries.

But Brazil's Foreign and Trade Ministries said on Wednesday the USA government had called off talks on April 26 after giving Brazil the option of picking between tariffs or quotas. Very much like North Korea, this should have been fixed years ago, not now.

He added, the same goes for other countries and NAFTA, but he reassured the American people all of it will get done.

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President Donald Trump announced the punitive action against China in late March for what the administration says is rampant theft of United States technology and know-how.

Trump has launched a broad commercial offensive to fulfill electoral promise that led to industrial America, which is to reduce gap between what United States imports and what it exports. "But we can only do that calmly when we are certain of being permanently exempted from the threat of unilateral tariff increases".

In a joint statement on Wednesday, Brazil's foreign and trade ministers said they were informed of the decision by the United States to break off negotiations last Thursday.

"It's the methods, it's the tactics, it's the uncertainty, it's the impact on our supply chains that we're trying to communicate, and I'm just not convinced they're listening at this point", he said. She warned that trade relations between the allies could worsen if the European Union does not receive a permanent exemption.

Germany and France are among the main European Union countries to support the permanent exemption.

The Trump administration has been pushing countries to accept quotas on the amount of steel and aluminium they export to the US.

The EU has threatened to retaliate if it is not exempt, which has raised fears of a trade war.

This is the same approach that Washington is taking with other trade partners.

Europe had lined up its own punitive tariffs on American imports, including iconic items like Harley-Davidson motorbikes, blue jeans and bourbon whiskey - but for now, instead, negotiations will continue. The quota amounts to 70 percent of the average of steel exports to the US over the last three years.

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