United States President Donald Trump received a call from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday night to discuss the new tariffs on imports of aluminum and steel. Trudeau and Trump spoke about the latest round of NAFTA negations, discussing the progress that has occurred during the 7th round of talks, while Trudeau also expressed his concern about Canada not being exempt from the high aluminum and steel tariffs that president Trump announced last week.
The Trump administration said it would use section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose new tariffs on aluminum and steel imports that they feel threaten United States National security. These new tariffs would charge 10 percent for aluminum, and 25 percent on steel. The only sign that Trump would be willing to give Canada an exemption is if Canada agrees to negotiate new and fair NAFTA deals with the United States. During a read-out of the conversation from Justin Trudeau’s office, it was said that “The prime minister also registered his serious concern about the U.S. administration’s proposed tariffs on steel and aluminum.”
Sense of Urgency
With Mexico holding presidential elections in July, there seems to be a new sense of urgency regarding NAFTA talks, as people are starting to worry that a new Mexican president could throw a wrench in things and that the talks would have to start all over if they aren’t finalized before a new president gets elected.
Running out of Time
Since this was the seventh round of NAFTA talks for Mexico, the United States and Canada, people are starting to be concerned that time is running out for a deal to be struck between the three countries. Since the announcement last week Chrystia Freeland, the Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister said she has been working at getting Canada excluded from the new tariffs. “If necessary we would consider any section 232 action directed at Canada to be totally unacceptable and in that event, we would take responsive measures to defend our workers and our industry.”
Meagan Kozlovs is a reporter for Debate Report. She’s worked and interned at Global News Toronto and CHECX. Megan is based in Toronto and covers issues affecting her city. In addition to her severe milk shake addiction, she’s a Netflix enthusiast, a red wine drinker, and a voracious reader.