Chrystia Freeland: Canada Will Have $3.6B Response To Trump’s ‘Absurd’ Aluminum Tariffs

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland says Canada will retaliate with $3.6 billion in tariffs against the United States in light of the Trump White House’s “absurd” decision to target Canadian aluminum again.

Freeland told reporters in Toronto Friday that Canada will respond “swiftly and strongly” with dollar-for-dollar countermeasures to a planned 10 per cent tariff on Canadian raw aluminum announced by U.S. President Donald Trump Thursday. Those tariffs are set to come into force on Aug. 16, leaving some room for a change of course.

“The United States has taken the absurd decision to harm its own people at a time when its economy is suffering the deepest crisis since the Great Depression,” she said.

Freeland said a Canada-U.S. trade dispute is the last thing anyone needs at a time when both countries are fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It will only hurt the economic recovery on both sides of the border. However, this is what the U.S. administration has chosen to do,” she said.

The U.S. imposed the same tariff on Canadian aluminum in 2018, as well as a 25 per cent import tariff on steel. Canada fired back at the time with $16.6 billion in tariffs on strategically selected U.S. products. Both sides reached a deal to end the punishing measures in 2019 as part of the successful renegotiation of the new NAFTA deal, now known as the USMCA.

She noted that with the trade pact coming into force on July 1, now is a time to enhance North American economic competitiveness, “not to hinder it.” She also noted the USMCA includes a provision that 70 per cent of aluminum purchased by North American automakers must be produced in North America.

“These tariffs will make it harder for the North American carmakers NAFTA is designed to support,” she said.

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Freeland said Canada’s response will again be perfectly reciprocal. “We will not escalate, and we will not back down,” she said.

‘Unnecessary, unwarranted, unacceptable’

The deputy PM blasted the proposed U.S. tariffs as “unnecessary, unwarranted, and entirely unacceptable,” and expressed incredulity that the U.S. administration appears to be again framing the decision as one based on national security concerns.

“Let me be clear, Canadian aluminum in no way a threat to U.S. national security, which remains the ostensible reason for these tariffs. And that is a ludicrous notion,” she said.

Freeland said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has decided to launch 30-day consultations over which U.S. products containing aluminum could be ripe for retaliation. The federal government has released a broad list of U.S. products that could be targeted, including everything from golf clubs and aluminum foil to refrigerators.

“We invite Canadians and Canadian businesses to participate in these consultations over the next 30 days, after which we will impose retaliatory tariffs,” she said.

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At a speech Thursday in Ohio, a key battleground state in November’s presidential election, Trump claimed Canada was “taking advantage of us, as usual” and flooding the U.S. market with Canadian aluminum. The federal government and Canadian aluminum producers say that accusation is totally false.

Jean Simard, president of the Aluminium Association of Canada, told The Canadian Press that raw aluminum exports to the U.S. went up due to the COVID-19 crisis because smelters on this side of the border, unable just to stop running, switched to producing raw products for U.S. warehouses to store. The group said the export balance began to restore in June and July, with raw exports falling 16 per cent in June, and 30 per cent in July.

Freeland pointedly noted that Trump made the announcement during a stop at a Whirlpool manufacturing plant, and she said the washing machines manufactured there will now “become more expensive for Americans and less competitive with machines produced elsewhere in the world, as a result of these tariffs.”

Though she called the Trump administration the most “protectionist in U.S. history,” she would not weigh in on whether she felt the decision was an election gambit, nor did she have much to say about the possibility the tariffs could be lifted if presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden becomes president.

Freeland hopes ‘common sense’ prevails

Instead, she urged the U.S. to reconsider and expressed hope “common sense” and economic logic would prevail. “I just hope that happens sooner rather than later,” she said.

Freeland also thanked provincial and territorial premiers for supporting the countermeasures in what she called a “Team Canada” approach.

Earlier in the day, Ontario Premier Doug Ford expressed his disappointment in Trump and support for Canada’s planned retaliation.

“In times like this, who tries to go after your closest ally, your closest trading partner, your number one customer in the entire world? Who would do this? Well, President Trump did this,” Ford said.

The reimposition of U.S. aluminum tariffs has been talked about for weeks in light of earlier reports this summer from Bloomberg and the New York Times.

Last month, Trudeau said he told Trump directly that the pandemic had “disrupted unusual manufacturing processes,” leading to a disruption in the aluminium sector that was starting to realign itself.

“I impressed upon him that it would be a shame to see tariffs come in between our two countries at the time where we’re celebrating NAFTA and at a time where we want our businesses and our manufacturers to get going as quickly as possible. We pledged to keep working on it together,” Trudeau said at the time.

With files from Sherina Harris, The Canadian Press

Earlier on HuffPost:

 

 

'Who Would Do This?': Doug Ford Calls Out Donald Trump's Tariffs On Canada

Premier Doug Ford says “give your head a shake,” in response to U.S. President Donald Trump and his decision to reimpose a 10 per cent tariff on Canadian raw aluminium.

“I just have to say how disappointed I am with President Trump right now,” Ford said at his Friday news conference. “In times like this, who tries to go after your closest ally, your closest trading partner, your number one customer in the entire world? Who would do this? Well, President Trump did this.”

Canada and the United States are supposed to be close allies and “part of the big family,” but it’s unacceptable that Trump “comes and backstabs us like this,” Ford said. 

The premier said he spoke to Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland Friday morning and encouraged the feds to impose retaliatory tariffs on as many U.S. goods as possible.

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Later Friday morning, Freeland announced Canada would respond with $3.6 billion in tariffs. “We’ll always defend our aluminum industry and Canadian workers,” she said.

Freeland added that she thanks provincial, territorial and labour leaders for their “strong defence of the Canadian national interest.”

“We’re up against a real battle right now, it’s us versus them,” Ford said. “And I’ve always said, I love the American people. But right now, for the president to come and attack us during these times, through a pandemic when we need everyone’s support, is totally unacceptable.”

He also said when he spoke to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, he warned Ontario and Canada would be “coming out swinging like you’ve never seen before.”

WATCH: Vast COVID-19 disparity a problem for Canada-U.S. travel, says Njoo. Story continues below.

 

As he has often done in recent weeks, Ford encouraged Ontarians to buy made in Ontario or Canada products.

“Folks, as individuals, we can’t put tariffs on. But what we can do, we can hit them where it hurts,” he said.

Ford said Ontario is the top trading partner of 19 states, and the number two trading partner to nine others. He also cited a 2018 statistic that the U.S. had a $9 billion trade surplus with Canada.

“It’s just frustrating,” he said of the tariffs, given the trade surplus. “But don’t worry. We’ll get out there. The public [is] the strongest when it comes to retaliatory measures, we can put tariffs and I encourage that we put retaliatory tariffs on every single item we can, dollar-for-dollar.”

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Back in July, Ford warned Trump not to put tariffs on Canadian aluminum and said, as he repeated Friday, that the province would fight back against any potential tariffs. 

Trudeau Promises Retaliation After Trump Reimposes Tariffs On Canadian Raw Aluminum

OTTAWA — The Trudeau government is promising to impose retaliatory tariffs on American products after U.S. President Donald Trump announced Thursday he is restoring an import tax on raw aluminum from Canada later this month.

“In response to the American tariffs, Canada intends to swiftly impose dollar-for-dollar countermeasures,” Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said in a written statement.

She called Trump’s decision to reimpose tariffs on Canadian aluminum “unwarranted and unacceptable” and suggested his timing couldn’t be worse.

“In the time of a global pandemic and an economic crisis, the last thing Canadian and American workers need is new tariffs that will raise costs for manufacturers and consumers, impede the free flow of trade and hurt provincial and state economies.”

Freeland noted that the new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement that replaced NAFTA went into force on July 1, including a provision that ensures 70 per cent of aluminum purchased by North American automakers must be produced in North America.

She argued that the trade deal partners should be using the new deal to “advance North American competitiveness — not hinder it.”

As for Trump basing his decision on supposed national security concerns, Freeland said: “Canadian aluminum does not undermine U.S. national security. Canadian aluminum strengthens U.S. national security and has done so for decades through unparalleled co-operation between our two countries.”

Details of the counter-tariffs Canada intends to impose are to be announced “shortly,” the statement said. Freeland is to hold a news conference about the aluminum tariffs on Friday morning.

The U.S. previously imposed the same tariff between June 1, 2018, and May 17, 2019, along with a 25 per cent import tariff on Canadian steel. Canada retaliated with $16.6 billion in tariffs on U.S. products, including ketchup, ballpoint pens, licorice, orange juice, whisky and toilet paper.

At the time, Canada focused on products that would cause pain in electoral districts held by key Republicans, something that could be done again given the U.S. election is only three months away.

During a speech at a Whirlpool manufacturing plant in the battleground state of Ohio, Trump accused Canada of breaking a promise not to flood the U.S. market with the Canadian metal.

“Canada was taking advantage of us, as usual,” Trump said.

“The aluminum business was being decimated by Canada, very unfair to our jobs and our great aluminum workers.”

Trump said on the advice of U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer he signed a proclamation earlier in the day to put a 10 per cent tariff back on raw aluminum from Canada as of Aug. 16.

Canada’s aluminum industry immediately called for “reasonable” but “painful” retaliatory tariffs. 

Jean Simard, president of the Aluminium Association of Canada, said the decision will destabilize Canada’s industry and supply chains in an already shaky economy that is struggling under the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s the wrong thing for the wrong reason at the wrong time for the wrong people,” he said.

Canada is not flooding the U.S. market, he said, and the only thing the tariffs will do is cause U.S. consumers to pay more for anything containing aluminum.

He said Canada needs “to hit back, dollar for dollar” at the very least on U.S. products containing aluminum. He said that could also extend beyond aluminum.

“I think we’re going to ponder the possibilities in the coming weeks and see what is on the one hand reasonable and on the other hand can be painful,” Simard said.

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Calls for retaliation were echoed by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the United Steelworkers union.

Trump said his administration had only agreed to lift the original tariffs in 2019 because Canada promised it would not “flood our country with exports and kill all our aluminum jobs, which is exactly what they did.”

“Canadian aluminum producers have broken that commitment,” he said.

The American Primary Aluminum Association — made up of two U.S. metal companies, Century Aluminum and Magnitude 7 Metals — have lobbied the White House to restore the tariffs and on Thursday officials with the companies thanked Trump for listening.

“The decisive action taken today by the Trump Administration will help save America’s primary aluminum industry which has been decimated by an unprecedented surge of Canadian primary aluminum imports,” said Mark Duffy, CEO of the association, in a written statement.

Simard, however, said the American companies are getting U.S. consumers to subsidize their plants to keep running, rather than taking steps to modernize their production to make them more competitive. He said the U.S. is picking and choosing numbers to support their argument but in reality, Canadian exports to the U.S. have fallen in the last year, and there is no surge in exports or production from this side of the border.

“We’re not surprised but we’re disappointed because it’s totally misguided,” he said.

The U.S. association claims raw aluminum exports from Canada went up 95 per cent over the last 12 months. Trump’s proclamation stated that they were up 87 per cent between June 2019 and May 2020.

But Simard said overall exports to the U.S. have fallen in the last year. Raw exports went up because of COVID-19, but value-added products used by auto companies to make cars fell off a cliff. When COVID-19 shut down the economy, auto assembly lines were stopped, and all orders from Canada for aluminum parts were cancelled.

But Simard said smelters can’t just stop running so they switched to producing raw product which was exported to U.S. warehouses for storage. He said the material is then released over time to fill demand later on.

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As the assembly lines started moving again, the export balance began to restore in June and July. The Aluminium Association of Canada said raw exports fell 16 per cent in June, and 30 per cent in July.

The spectre of the tariffs being reapplied has hung over Canada’s aluminum industry for more than a month, and was the subject of a conversation between Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Trump in mid-July.

On July 8, Trudeau said he does not understand why Trump would even be considering restoring the tariffs. He said the U.S. doesn’t make enough aluminum to meet its own need, both economies were struggling under the weight of the pandemic, and tariffs would simply raise prices for U.S. manufacturers.

Canada’s aluminum industry is heavily reliant on exports to the U.S., which accounts for about 90 per cent Canada’s aluminum exports.

U.S. appliance companies like Whirlpool, where Trump chose to make his announcement Thursday, were forced to raise prices in 2019 because of the previous steel and aluminum tariffs.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 6, 2020.

 

Cobber’s Long and Bouressa Survive To Earn All-American Honors

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Concordia wrestlers Jake Long and Tom Bouressa survived the long first day of the NCAA National Meet and earned All-American honors. Both wrestlers won their first match, lost in the quarterfinals and rallied to win their first consolation match to advance to the final 8 in their weight class.

For Long it is his first-ever All-American honor while Bouressa picks up his second All-American award in the past three years.

The duo helped the Cobbers score 13.5 team points which has them tied for 13th place heading into the final day of the championship meet.

Long provided the biggest highlight of the opening day as he upset No.2-seeded Michael Polizzi from Stevens Institute of Technology in the consolation quarterfinals. He hung with Polizzi until the final half of the third period and then pulled away to earn an 8-5 decision. Long will now face No.4-seeded Emanual Ajagbe of Delaware Valley in the consolation semifinals.

Long, who was seeded eighth heading into the national meet, won his opening match over Jorge Lopez of Williams College by a pin fall at 2:07. He then lost to No. 1-ranked Kodie Silvestri 7-0 in the championship quarterfinals.

Bouressa, who is ranked sixth in the nation at 285 and was the sixth seed for the tournament, also went 2-1 on the day. He won his first round bout by beating Corey James of SUNY-Cortland 2-0. Bouressa fell in the quarterfinals 5-3 at the hands of No.3-seedWilliam Mayer from UW-La Crosse. He responded by grinding out a 7-2 victory in the consolation quarterfinals over Jake Ceslickfrom Olivet. Bouressa will face No.7-seed Ryan Fank from Wartburg in the consolation semifinals.

Nathan Schmitz, Jacoby Bergeron, Kevin Fynboh and Will McCarthy all lost twice on the first day and saw their chance for All-American honors come to an end. Schmitz had three grueling matches on the day. He lost his opener 2-1 in overtime to No.2 seed Alex Coolidge of Cornell. He started his consolation trek by manhandling Matthew Transue of Wilkes. Schmitz then lost in the final seconds of his consolation quarterfinal match. He led for most of the match but then gave up a takedown in the final :20 of the third period. Schmitz, who earned All-American honors last year, finishes his storied four-year career with a 101-38 record.

Bergeron dropped his opener 7-4 but then rebounded with a 5-4 decision over Chad Lammer of Elizabethtown. He then lost to No.6-seeded Evan Obert of Luther in the consolation quarterfinals. Bergeron finishes his junior season with a 17-9 overall record.

Fynboh had the toughest first-round draw of any of the six Cobbers and lost the opener at 149 against Chris Burdge of Centenary who won the national championship at 141 last year. Fynboh shook off the first-round defeat by earning a 5-2 decision in the first round of the consolation bracket. He trailed heading into the final half of his match but then used a pair of stellar single-leg takedowns to get four points. Fynboh then lost in the consolation semifinals to the No.1 seeded wrestler in the bracket. Fynboh ends his senior year with a 21-15 mark and won 77 matches in his career.

McCarthy, wrestling in his first NCAA Meet, dropped both of his matches on the day. He fell 10-2 in the first round and then by pin fall in the consolation first round. McCarthy wrapped up his sophomore season with a 14-12 record.

Long and Bouressa will continue their NCAA National Meet experience on Saturday, Mar. 16 beginning at 10 a.m.

Day 1 Team Totals

1.Wartburg66.02.Wisconsin-Whitewater46.03.Elmhurst39.54.Wisconsin-La Crosse32.55.Ithaca29.06.Centenary (NJ)27.07.SUNY-Cortland25.58.Springfield24.09.Augsburg22.510.The College Of New Jersey21.511.Luther21.012.Elizabethtown18.013. Concordia-Moorhead 13.513.Delaware Valley13.515.Messiah13.016.Concordia (WI)12.016.St. Johns (MN)12.018.New York University11.018.Ursinus11.020.Trine University10.520.Wheaton (IL)10.520.Williams College10.523.Johns Hopkins10.023.Wilkes10.025.Heidelberg9.5

 

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2013 NCAA Division III Championships Results for Concordia-Moorhead
125 – Will McCarthy (12-11)
Round 1 – Brandon Preston (Trine University) won by maj.r dec. over Will McCarthy (MD 10-2)
Cons. Round 1 – Jacob Spearman (Wash&Jeff 23-6 won by fall over Will McCarthy (Fall 5:38)

133 – Jacoby Bergeron (10-4)
Round 1 – Dalton Bullard (Elmhurst) 18-7 won by decision over Jacoby Bergeron  (Dec 7-4)
Cons. Round 1 – Jacoby Bergeron won by dec. over Chad Lammer (Etown) 14-10 (Dec 5-4)
Cons. Round 2 – Evan Obert (Luther) 26-7 won by dec over Jacoby Bergeron (Dec 5-2)

149 – Jacob Long (16-9)
Round 1 – Jacob Long won by fall over Jorge Lopez (Williams College) (Fall 2:07)
Quarterfinal – Kodie Silvestri (Wartburg) won by decision over Jacob Long (Dec 7-0)
Cons. Round 2 – Jacob Long won by decision over Michael Polizzi (Stevens IofTech) (Dec 8-5)

157 – Kevin Fynboh (19-14)
Round 1 – Chris Burdge (Centenary (NJ)) won by fall over Kevin Fynboh (Fall 6:12)
Cons. Round 1 – Kevin Fynboh won by decision over Ryan Warczynksi (Dubuque) (Dec 5-2)
Cons. Round 2 – Elias Larson (Trine University) won by fall over Kevin Fynboh (Fall 2:08)

197 – Nathan Schmitz (13-5)
Round 1 – Alex Coolidge (Cornell College) won in tie breaker over Nathan Schmitz (TB-1 2-1)
Cons. Round 1 – Nathan Schmitz won by maj. dec. over Matthew Transue (Wilkes) (MD 10-2)
Cons. Round 2 – Trent Flegel (Luther) won by decision over Nathan Schmitz (Dec 7-5)

285 – Tom Bouressa (23-4)
Round 1 – Tom Bouressa won by decision over Corey James (SUNY-Cortland) (Dec 2-0)
Quarterfinal – William Mayer (UW-La Crosse) won by decision over Tom Bouressa (Dec 5-3)
Cons. Round 2 – Tom Bouressa won by decision over Jake Ceslick (Olivet) (Dec 7-2)

Video: Kevin Owens Talks Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns, more

Michael Cole’s guest on this week’s WWE sit-down interview is the newly-crowned WWE Universal Champion Kevin Owens. Above is the complete video and below are select highlights:

* Owens gives Cole a hard time to start the interview but Cole finally congratulates him on winning the title. Cole asks if Owens knew Triple H was getting involved in the recent Fatal 4 Way title match on RAW. Owens says he had no idea but Triple H did the right thing, he made things right

* Owens plugs his “beautiful” new t-shirt and says everyone should go buy it. Cole brings up Seth Rollins ruining the celebration on RAW and their match at Clash of Champions. Owens says Rollins has been nothing but a failure since returning from his injury. Owens goes on to knock Rollins and wonders why he thinks he deserves a shot at the title

* Cole brings up how Roman Reigns may be put into the Clash of Champions match if he beats Owens on next week’s RAW. Owens says he will beat Reigns on RAW and reminds us that he beat Reigns, Rollins and Big Cass for the title in Houston. Owens asks Cole if he looks worried, if Reigns were to make into the match. Owens says he’s not worried because he’s the WWE Universal Champion and this is The Kevin Owens Show. The interview ends

Breaking RAW News, Triple H Pushing for Major Heel Turn – Happening on RAW?, Samoa Joe’s Main Roster Debut, WWE Stars Upset Over Lesnar, Vince McMahon Disses Reigns, Kevin Owens Push Plans, WWE Doing RAW vs. SmackDown Matches Soon, WWE Veteran Returning Soon, Big WWE Title News Revealed, Must See New Diva Bikini Galleries, Dana Brooke – Triple H Report, Bad News for Reigns’ Push?, HHH Low-Balling WWE Stars on Money?, Must See New Lana & AJ Lee & Maryse, Lots of New GIFs& Exclusives, More

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