Published: Thu, March 15, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

China Slowly Shrinks Steel Industry, Drawing Western Ire

China Slowly Shrinks Steel Industry, Drawing Western Ire

Part of the reason for the trade gap, Zhong said, was that the U.S. had restricted hi-tech exports to China.

It was Beijing's latest statement on "problems in Sino-U.S. economic trade and cooperation", alluding to President Donald Trump's plan to impose heavy tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. Two days later, word trickled out that Canada and Mexico would both be given exemptions, pending the outcome of NAFTA talks.

President Xi Jinping's top economic advisor, Liu He, held trade discussions with United States officials at the White House earlier this month but the meetings yielded few breakthroughs.

Zhong said China would continue to "relax market access" to China and said China would also attach greater importance to intellectual property right, another point of tension with the U.S.

At this point, Manning tells OneNewsNow, it's important to get the steel and aluminum situation stabilized while at the same time allowing deregulation and cutting taxes to take effect, improving the USA economy, too. When Japan allowed its auto producers to control the auto distributors, it was declaring a trade war. "Now it's being used as leverage", said Hamilton Port Authority Chief Executive Officer Ian Hamilton.

Then, there's the rest of the world: Steel-producing countries affected by the tariff are concerned that this will handicap sales and threaten manufacturing jobs - and, if these countries decide to pass their own tariffs in retaliation, it could trigger a global "trade war" of revenge tariffs. But Ms Bishop said the United States has a global program of challenging questionable maritime claims, whereas Australia does not.


Trump has railed against major global trading partners, most recently by imposing a tariff on steel and aluminum exports, but granted an exemption to Canada and Mexico as the three countries approach a reorganization of NAFTA, the trade agreement Trump has threatened to tear up.

Bloomberg cited "uncertainty over the prospect of new tariffs" which "chipped away at industrial and consumer staple shares".

The prime minister is on a cross-country tour of aluminum and steel factories to demonstrate his government's support for workers in light of potential threats to those industries from the USA administration.

Canada, the top supplier of steel and aluminum to the USA market, and Mexico have been temporarily exempted from the tariffs until trilateral continental trade talks conclude. They also fear that other countries hit by the new tariff policy will redirect their steel exports to Europe. A better way to cultivate a stronger domestic steel and aluminum industry is to increase federal funding for infrastructure projects that will boost demand for these and many other products.

Being forced to rule on the Trump tariffs "would put the WTO in a tough spot", DeBusk says.

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