Trump delays decision on steel and aluminium tariffs

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If all the exemptions were ended, it would deepen the impact of the tariffs on American companies that use steel and potentially affect financial markets.

The US has not granted South Africa an exemption on its increased steel and aluminium tariffs, this after the department of trade and industry (DTI) made representations to the US government.

Last week, French president Emmanuel Macron and German chancellor Angela Merkel both made their case to Trump for why the European Union bloc should get permanent and unconditional relief from the tariffs, partly arguing that they are America's security partners.

In an official statement, the European Commission blasted the Trump administration for delaying implementation of the tariffs.

Labor's Trade spokesman Jason Clare said the steel and aluminium announcement was good news, but warned again Australia might face dumping from nations that did not have an exemption. But tariffs are likely to be imposed on steel and aluminum imports from Japan.

May 1, 2018 was the original deadline for President Donald Trump to make a decision pending North American Free Trade Agreement talks with Canada and Mexico and negotiations with the EU.

U.S. manufacturers would also have enhanced pricing powers as the cost of foreign imports would become prohibitive for those buying steel.

The Trump administration's proposed tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports, coupled with retaliation promised by China, would reduce US gross domestic product by almost $3 billion and destroy 134,000 American jobs, according to a new study released today by the National Retail Federation and the Consumer Technology Association. China was among the countries not to be exempted and responded with retaliation measures on some American imports.

The United States wants to "change the discussion on trade", Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said as he gears up for a two-day trip to China.

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Economists say the stand-off could tip towards a trade war if Trump responds with further tariffs, such as on European Union cars.

The announcement in March played well to workers in the United States steel and aluminium industries, which are largely concentrated in the Midwest "rust belt". "Fundamentally, the German government's expectation remains a permanent exemption".

Before Tuesday, South Koreawas the only country with a full exemption after it agreed to quotas.

Ever since President Trump announced the proposed taxes on foreign goods, the business community has risen in protest, fearing retaliatory actions from overseas.

This is the same approach that Washington is taking with other trade partners.

It's time for Congress to do more than just talk the talk on the steel and aluminum tariffs.

This would include steel products such as seamless tube and pipe for the oil industry, Cabrera said.

The permanent exemptions on steel imports from Brazil and Korea are hopeful news for USA tire manufacturers, which are wholly dependent on imported steel wire rod as a source of steel tire cord.

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