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USMCA: US Lifts Steel, Aluminum Tariffs on Canada, Mexico

USMCA – The United States signed deals on Friday that removed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada and Mexico, according to their respective governments. The agreements got rid of a barrier to legislative approval of the new North American trade deal.

The agreements removed the US quotas on Canadian and Mexican metals shipments. They also got rid of retaliatory tariffs from Mexico and Canada on a broad range of US goods such as pork, bourbon, and beef.

The agreements were implemented on Sunday afternoon. And they included new curbs that would prevent dumped steel and aluminum from China and other countries from entering the US through Canada.

“This is just pure good news for Canadians,” said Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau after announcing the news to workers at Stelco Holding Inc.’s steel mill in Ontario.

Stelco shares climbed 11% on the news. Meanwhile, US steelmaker Nuco dropped 3.1% and US Steel Corp lost 1.2%.

In March 2018, US President Donald Trump imposed the global “Section 232” tariffs of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum, citing national security grounds and invoking Cold War-era trade law.

Both Canada and Mexico spent 14 months arguing that their metals industries did not pose any security threat to the US.

They said their economies are integrated with that of the US. Challenging the tariffs before the World Trade Organization.

USMCA RatificationUSMC – concept of a single flag with US, Mexico, and Canada designs – Finance Brokerage

The tariffs on the metals were a huge barrier for Canada and Mexico. Which both halted progress toward the ratification of the new US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

The USMCA is the trilateral trade deal set to replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

US lawmakers with allies suffering from the previous retaliation by Canada and Mexico said that they would not consider a USMCA vote as long as the tariffs were in place.

“Thank you Mr. President for really helping the farmers of Iowa with this important step in USMCA,” said Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley via Twitter. “China ought to take note/start dealing in good faith & take Pres Trump seriously.”

Meanwhile, several US Democrats praised the removal of the tariffs. However, they also said that the USMCA wasn’t yet ready for their support.

“When it comes to the new agreement, House Democrats continue to have a number of substantial concerns related to labor, environment, enforcement, and access to affordable medicines provision. Those issues still need to be remedied,” said House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal.

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