US Removes Steel, Aluminum Tariffs on Canada, Mexico

On Friday, the US announced plans to lift steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada and Mexico in favor of stronger enforcement actions in a move that will help clear the way for ratification of the new NAFTA.

The United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer,  has made a statement indicating the tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum will end no later than 48 hours after the issuance of the statement. You can read the statement here. Also, Canada and Mexico will eliminate their retaliatory tariffs.

The move removes the 25% steel and 10% aluminum tariffs the US placed on the two trading neighbors almost a year ago in the name of national security. The decision sparked retaliatory duties from Canada and Mexico on US farming goods and other products, and left the potential that lawmakers in all three nations wouldn’t ratify the deal.

As part of the agreement to scrap the levies, the US will be able to impose new tariffs on Canada and Mexico if they don’t do enough to prevent any surge of imports of the metals. The nations have also all agreed to ramp up efforts to trace where the metals have come from originally, to stop the diversion of shipments from other nations, especially China, to dodge the tariffs. The enforcement system will aim to advantage primary steel and aluminum producers in the three-nation trading bloc to ensure that the metal is melted, poured or smelted regionally.