Canada fires back at Trump and imposes $3.6B in retaliatory tariffs
President Trump slapped Canada with an aluminum tariff on Thursday, but the Canadian federal government is making it clear that they're not going to take the new 10 per cent tax lying down.
Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland called the U.S. decision "unnecessary, unwarranted and entirely unacceptable."
"A trade dispute is the last thing that anyone needs," Freeland said. "It can only hurt the economic recovery on both sides of the border."
She added that the "absurd" new tariff will only harm Americans during a time when the U.S. economy is already suffering, citing an inevitable increase in the cost of canned drinks, bicycles, and even the very washing machines at the Ohio Whirlpool factory where Trump made his announcement.
Freeland said that Canada will respond by imposing "perfectly reciprocal, dollar-for-dollar" countermeasures on U.S. aluminum, which will amount to a staggering $3.6 billion CAD.
In response to the American tariffs announced today, Canada will impose countermeasures that will include dollar-for-dollar retaliatory tariffs. We will always stand up for our aluminum workers. We did so in 2018 and we will stand up for them again now. https://t.co/gYH0ziOVM4— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) August 6, 2020
Freeland said she hopes the U.S. will reconsider the aluminum tariff before it goes into effect on Aug. 16.
The United States previously slapped import tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum in 2018, before removing them last year.
"This U.S. administration is the most protectionist administration in U.S. history," Freeland said, adding that Canada has "worked hard" to maintain its relationship with our neighbours south of the border in the face of it.
Still, Freeland said that the federal government will take a staunch "Team Canada" approach that prioritizes Canadian's aluminum industry and workers.
"We will not back down," she said.
Meanwhile in Ontario, Premier Doug Ford accused President Trump on Friday of being a backstabber that slapped Canada in the face with his new 10 per cent tariff.
"It's just unacceptable, what President Trump did," Ford said. "We're their closest allies."
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