David MacNaughton told reporters on Thursday he’s confident the end of the tariffs is drawing near.
The 25 per cent tariff on steel and the 10 per cent tariff on aluminum were imposed by Trump in March 2018, and prompted Canadian counter-tariffs on a wide range of goods from ketchup to circuit breakers.
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Referred to as the “Section 232” tariffs, Trump said they were imposed for reasons of “national security.”
MacNaughton said previously the Canadian government was pushing hard to have the tariffs lifted – and that American companies were feeling the heat from the tariffs imposed by Canada.
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Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said last week that Canada’s official position was that since trade negotiations with the U.S. were over, “that is all the more reason why these tariffs ought to be lifted.”
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A new trade deal between Canada, the U.S., and Mexico (CUSMA) was signed in October – replacing NAFTA.
At the time, Trump said the section 232 tariffs were staying “until such time we can do something … so our steel industry is protected.”