The impact on US President Donald Trump’s plans to impose metal import tariffs will not be great on China and Beijing is well-prepared for it, say analysts.
Tata Steel Europe, for which the US represents 10% of its sales, welcomed the EU’s pledge of swift action.
The European Union is reported to be considering retaliatory tariffs, targeting USA steel, agriculture and other products. China’s biggest listed producer, promptly fell the most since, um, Wednesday. Canada, EU, South Korea, Mexico, Brazil, Japan, Taiwan and China are top eight steel suppliers to the US.
Industry insiders were less restrained.
He reacted Friday after the US indicated that it was leaning toward using a rarely invoked provision in American law that allows a president to unilaterally declare tariffs to counter threats to national security.
“China has been dealing with steel and aluminium overcapacity for some time now”. The U.S. Commerce Department has described the situation as just that – a national security threat.
He added, “The tariffs will significantly raise domestic steel and aluminum prices, benefitting steel producers”.
At home, tariffs result in higher prices, making it more expensive to manufacture and consume products made with steel and aluminum. The company is a large buyer of lighter-weight aluminum, which it began using in recent years in body panels for F-series pickups and large SUVs.
It’s cheaper for United States consumers to buy things made overseas, and that’s what they’ve been doing for many years.
“We will not sit idly while our industry is hit with unfair measures that put thousands of European jobs at risk”, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said in a statement. Australian Trade Minister Steve Ciobo called the move “disappointing” and said his country is seeking an exemption.
“For a real estate guy like that, you pound the podium, you rattle some sabres, you get everybody’s attention and then you negotiate back to some reasonable midpoint”, Orlando said. The tariffs raised costs for steel-using industries, which employ more people and contribute more to the economy than the steel industry itself.
“That’s something we’re not going to tolerate because it costs American jobs”.
Suspecting that these new tariffs – by potentially dipping into the disposable income of US consumers – could also create some trickle-down effects on footwear, Matt Priest, president and CEO of the Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America, was critical of the potential order. They were reportedly reassured by US officials that measures would not affect British industry, which is already bracing for the economic repercussions of leaving the European Union single market.
China has previously warned it was ready with counter-measures should the Trump administration deploy tariffs, but the foreign ministry did not indicate yesterday that any such moves were in the works. Whatever the reason or reasons, the stock market went into a tailspin when the news was announced. He cites “cheating” by China and other nations that are accused of selling steel overseas below the cost of making it and of stealing key technologies.
“It’s not much ado about nothing”, he said.