Mexico to hit USA with tariffs on grapes, apples, blueberries

Steel pipes to be exported are seen at a port in Lianyungang Jiangsu province

Canada retaliated with $16.6 billion worth of "countermeasures" that hit a range of products from flat-rolled steel to playing cards, while Mexico also plans tariffs on a variety of us products, including flat steel.

The swift reaction from Canada and Mexico raises the possibility of a trade war between close allies.

The tariffs, set to take effect at midnight, happened to coincide with the Cansec trade show, in which numerous world's largest defence companies descend on Ottawa each year to pitch their wares to government. He said they "will only lead to the victory of those who want less growth, those who don't think we can develop our economies across the world".

Trump also told French President Emmanuel Macron of the need to "rebalance trade with Europe", the White House said.

Trudeau on Thursday said he felt the U.S., Mexico and Canada were on the verge of a renegotiated NAFTA that he described as a "win, win, win" before the talks stalled after the Pence phone call.

The S&P 500 Index dropped for the second time in three days, while stocks in Europe declined.

Shares of US Steel Corp rose 1.7 per cent, but AK Steel fell 1.3 per cent and Steel Dynamics Inc shed 0.9 per cent. Shares of Century Aluminum Co jumped 3.3 per cent but Alcoa Corp shed 0.9 per cent.

Speaking to the BBC when the tariffs were first proposed, Roberto Azevedo, the director general of the World Trade Organization, said Washington was still talking to Beijing.

"It's a sad day for worldwide trade", said the economy secretary today, describing the United States' announcement of metal tariffs against its trade partners as "completely incomprehensible". They report a really high surplus on trade with us.

President Trump had announced the tariffs in March, saying they were necessary to protect the United States from unfair competition and bolster national security.

"The United States decision is fundamentally wrong and extremely unsafe".

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau slammed U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to slap tariffs on Canadian steel, calling the move "totally unacceptable".

Canada, the largest supplier of steel to the United States, will impose tariffs covering C$16.6 billion ($12.8 billion) on imports from the USA, including whiskey, orange juice, steel, aluminium and other products, Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said.

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker said the 28-nation EU would announce "counter-balancing measures" following the U.S. decision.

United Kingdom manufacturers exported more than £300m worth of steel to the U.S. previous year.

The bloc also opened proceedings against China, the world's second biggest economy, in a case involving intellectual property, in an effort to not single out the U.S., the European Union said. "I don't see that at this point in time we have a big directional play".

Finance ministers and central bank governors meet during the G7 Finance Ministers Summit in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, June 1, 2018.

"This could be a catastrophic move and utterly self-defeating because when President Bush imposed tariffs in 2002 it led to the loss of 200,000 jobs in the USA manufacturing industry's". Trade Representative's Office, the US runs a $24.6 billion services trade surplus with Canada and a $12.1 billion deficit on goods.

He said that talks with Canada and Mexico over amending the North American Free Trade Agreement were "taking longer than we had hoped". That had not happened, so "now this door for the moment is closed".

It calls for Trudeau government to impose retaliatory measures and ensure that steel and aluminum are not dumped into Canada from third countries. And that is because other countries are afraid of American sanctions; they don't know who America is going to move against next. These could come into force from June 20, although European Union officials said it might take a little longer.

Trump and his allies argue that America's trading partners - especially China - are taking advantage of the USA and that the tariffs will cause American companies to make more steel and aluminum here, creating jobs and boosting the economy. Argentina, Australia, Brazil and South Korea all came to the negotiating table, while European Union officials said they would not negotiate trade issues "at gunpoint".

Trump has said the tariffs were necessary in order to protect USA national security, but they were widely criticized by foreign leaders, US business groups, and even some labor groups as being ill-designed and potentially damaging to the US economy.

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