Canada has received almost $300 million in duties due to the retaliatory tariffs it imposed on U.S. goods following the imposition of President Donald Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs.
The U.S. president imposed the tariffs earlier this year, saying his country had been treated “badly” in trade relations. Though initially Canada was exempt, that didn’t last long and Trump’s tariffs came into effect June 1.
At the time, Trump cited national security reasons for the tariffs.
On July 1, Canada fought back by imposing its own tariffs, on a total of $16.6 billion in goods, on things like yogurt, coffee, dish detergent, chocolate, prepared meals including pizza and quiche and whiskies.
Numbers provided to Global News by the Canada Border Services Agency show that under those retaliatory tariffs, the federal government collected about $118 million in July and another $168 million in August, for a total of $286 million.
Those numbers do not include what might have been collected from some domestic companies that have applied for and received an exemption to the tariffs through federal programs designed to limit the impact of the tariffs.
It is not clear how many domestic companies have benefitted from the programs.
The money collected is expected to be funneled back into the affected sectors.
“We are committed to making sure that every dollar raised in reciprocal tariffs is given back in the form of support for affected sectors,” Pierre-Olivier Herbert, spokesperson for Finance Minister Bill Morneau, said to Global News in an email.
On the U.S. side of things, a spokesperson for the U.S. Border and Customs Protection Agency says the country doesn’t tally data on the dollar value of tariffs collected broken down by country. The U.S. imposed tariffs on US$1.8 billion worth of Canadian steel and another US$535 million on Canadian aluminum.
The American numbers are reflective of the money assessed by the tariffs, and not the actual amount collected and processed by the U.S., the spokesperson clarified. That means the amount actually collected can change because of drawbacks or exemptions granted to the tariffs.
The U.S. has also imposed the steel and aluminum tariffs on all countries except Argentina and Australia, with Brazil and South Korea receiving exemptions for just the steel tariffs.
According to preliminary data from the U.S. Census, the U.S. imported 416,420 tonnes of steel from Canada in July 2018 worth US$413 million. In July 2017, the country imported 422,206 tonnes of steel from Canada worth US$392 million. There was no data available for the month of August.
There was no data immediately available for aluminum imports.
The numbers come as Freeland is back in Washington to resume negotiations on a trade deal with the U.S. to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.
The U.S. and Canada have been locked in talks for weeks since Mexico and the U.S. announced their own bilateral trade deal.
— With files from Amanda Connolly