Canada and Mexico Push the United States to Lift Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum

Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland welcomed Mexican officials in Toronto to discuss the ratification of the new NAFTA

May 16th, 2019
Anna Hlavackova, News from Berlin
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Chrystia Freeland welcomed Graciela Marquez Colin, Mexico’s economy secretary, and Jesus Seade, undersecretary for North America, to discuss Mexico’s labor reforms, Indigenous trade issues, and the 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum.

On May 14th, Canadian and Mexican officials met in Toronto and called for the United States to lift the steel and aluminum tariffs. After renegotiation of the North American free trade agreement in October 2018, the tariffs remain the last obstacle in creating a “true free trade” among the three countries. The tariffs were implemented by the United States last year, when the country slapped tariffs of 25% on imports of steel products and 10% on aluminum.

Minister Freeland told the press: ”… now that that agreement is moving towards ratification in all three countries, now more than ever we feel is the time to have the tariffs lifted.” Marquez Colin and Seade applauded her comment. This step has been previously also supported by the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who “stressed the importance of tariff removal” in a phone call with the U.S. Vice President Mike Pence.

Minister Freeland then traveled to Washington D.C. to continue the discussion with U.S. officials, including U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Senator Chuck Grassley


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