'A serious attack' -- Major US trading partners blast Trump's tariffs

This time, China can fight back against tariffs

Fears of a trade war after Trump imposes new steel tariffs

"In addition, there will be a mechanism for USA parties to apply for the exclusion of specific products based on demand that is unmet by domestic production or on specific national security considerations".

Trump drew on rarely used national security grounds to place a 25 percent tax on steel imports and 10 percent tax on imported aluminum.

"We have to protect and build our steel and aluminum industries, while at the same time showing great flexibility and cooperation toward those who are really friends of ours, both on a trade basis and a military basis", Trump said at a signing ceremony attended by steel and aluminum workers.

For all other countries, the tariffs will begin to be applied in 15-days. "What we need to ensure is that we can get our products to the American market and resolve some of these outstanding situations". Administration officials have sought to iron out how certain national security "carve-outs" might be implemented amid a push by some officials to lessen the economic impact of the tariffs.

Nevertheless, during his announcement yesterday, Trump repeated his threat to pull out of the 24-year-old trade agreement if it can not be reworked to his liking. "We just want fairness".

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And even as Trump approved the tariffs, 11 partners in the Asia-Pacific were in Santiago, Chile, to sign a multilateral trade deal embraced by president Barack Obama but rejected by Trump.

South Korea is the sixth biggest U.S. trading partner and a key military ally in Asia.

"There are strings attached to this decision, and it is the NAFTA negotiations", Dorval said. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer was frustrated that only six of the 33 chapters in the agreement were closed, but stated that he wanted to reach an agreement "in principle".

"On paper, China has more to lose from a trade war - it exports far more to the United States than it imports".

Canada, America's neighbour to the north, was its single-largest source of steel a year ago, followed by Brazil, South Korea, Russia, Mexico, Japan and Germany.

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Trump said he is open to modifying tariffs for some countries - the Trump administration will allow any country that has a security relationship with the Trump administration to discuss potential modifications to "address the threatened impairment of the national security caused by imports from that country", the White House official added. The Dow Jones plunged 420 points on March 1 after traders sold off stocks en masse.

According to the Associated Press, the plan "rankled allies and raised prospects for a trade war".

If such tariffs are imposed, they further argued, the White House should: exclude all fairly traded products and those that do not pose a national security threat; announce a robust exclusion process that allows US companies to petition for and obtain duty-free access for imports unavailable from domestic sources; grandfather in existing contracts for aluminum and steel purchases; and review the policy's effects on the economy.

"Many of the aluminum materials procured by US customers from Japan are hard to obtain or switch (to) from other sources", the industry body said, warning that the import curb could have an adverse impact on the USA industry. George W. Bush, Jr. tried the same back in 2002, but lost after the World Trade Organization ruled against him. We have a trade surplus with Australia.

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