European Union warns of more uncertainty after tariff delay

Trump delays decision on steel and aluminium tariffs

Steel and aluminum exporters from China, along with other metal-exporting nations such as Japan and India, have been paying the US tariffs since late March.

French President Emmanuel Macron and President Trump at the White House on April 24.

The US administration imposed the tariffs in March on national security grounds. Temporary waivers were granted for the EU, Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and South Korea.

To pressure China to play by global rules, experts and tech companies argue the USA government should put together a united front with allies who are also alarmed by Beijing's industrial policy.

If unresolved, those countries could become subject to USA tariffs of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium as previously announced in a move created to target China.

Lighthizer said the problems were grave since practices such as forced technology transfers and even outright theft undermine the United States ability to position itself for the economy of the future. China shot back with threats of $50 billion in retaliatory tariffs on US imports.

Germany, whose trade surplus has attracted criticism from Trump, said it expected a permanent exemption.

As U.S. President Donald Trump exempts Canada from steep new tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum for another month, the Canadian government has quietly approved new promised measures aimed at cracking down on the dumping of such materials by countries like China. "The decision lies with the president", she said Friday. The U.S. will also extend exemptions for the EU, Canada and Mexico for 30 days to allow for further talks.

The same considerations are being made ahead of a deadline in June for tariffs on US$50 billion worth of Chinese imports to be imposed.

Mr. Lopes said the quotas being offered by the United States in lieu of tariffs would mean a 7.4 percent reduction in the exports of semi-finished steel products and a drop of between 20 percent and 60 percent in exports of finished goods, depending on the product.

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The business sector of the Old Continent has expressed its concerns about the developments on the fear of imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium by the U.S. The Confederation of European Business characterized the recent extension as positive but clarified that companies need more certainty.

Some countries were then exempted temporarily from those tariffs, including Canada, the European Union and Mexico.

Brazil still expects the United States to exempt it from trade restrictions, the government statement said, but "remains willing to adopt, in bilateral and multilateral venues, all actions needed to preserve its rights and interests".

President Trump took to his Twitter account to inform about the United States delegation heading towards China to hold talks on the trade deficit between the two countries.

"I'm always hoping but not always hopeful", US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said Tuesday.

The White House has not yet confirmed any exemptions will be made permanent and leaders of the European Union stand "ready to react" if they do go into effect.

It has also reached an agreement in principal with Argentina, Brazil and Australia.

Lighthizer said China had already followed that path with steel and aluminum - products now subject to steep U.S. tariffs - as well as semiconductors and "now they want to do it in all these areas, many of which will drive the economy".

Canada exported over $12 billion of steel and aluminium to the United States in 2017, with another $3 billion from Mexico. Security relationships with the US have also been part of the criteria. There isn't much discussion of what we can do together, just a show of strength: You hit us, we'll hit you back.

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