'It is a dollar for dollar response': Canada strikes back at US

Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland
Patrick Doyle  The Canadian Press

It's all part of Ottawa's plan to strike back at the U.S.in response to hefty tariffs on steel and aluminum, 25 per cent and 10 per cent respectively, imposed last month by President Donald Trump.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government released Friday the final list of items that Canada will target beginning July 1.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains and Employment Minister Patty Hajdu are scheduled to unveil the countermeasures at the Stelco mill in Hamilton on Friday, while International Trade Minister François-Philippe Champagne will mirror the announcement at the Rio Tinto plant in Saguenay, Que.

If Trump steps up his attacks on Canada's economy and imposes a 25 percent tariff on automobiles as threatened, it would lead to "carmageddon", Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association, told a Commons committee hearing on Tuesday.

But at the end of May, Trump said that Canada and the European Union would be swept into the tariffs, setting off a series of tit-for-tat tariffs by close US trading partners. Canadian steel is used in American tanks, and Canadian aluminum in American planes.

At an event on Friday, he said his new tariffs were bringing "billions of dollars" to the US.

She is also expected to reveal the details of the federal government's plan to support Canada's tariff-targeted steel and aluminum industries.

In May, when the United States said it would not extend exemptions from the tariffs to Canada and Mexico, it said those talks were moving too slowly.

Alberta's NDP government is backing Ottawa's retaliatory tariffs against the United States even as a prominent local business organization is concerned about Canada taking aggressive trade action against its southern neighbour.

Freeland said such tariffs would be "absurd" because the North American auto industry is highly integrated and parts made in Canada often go to cars manufactured in the US and then sold back to Canadians.

"Canadians are in a position of vulnerability when we could have been in a position of strength" during the trade dispute, Poilievre said.

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"Any trade action is disruptive on both sides of the border", Freeland said. "I think all of us, at this point, fully anticipate there will be some moments of drama in the future".

Canada promised to react by imposing retaliatory tariffs on C$16.6 billion worth of USA exports and Freeland is due to outline exactly which goods will be hit, said the source.

Overall, Ujczo said Canada's retaliatory tariffs have been baked into the White House's calculus for months.

Media captionDairy wars: Why is Trump threatening Canada over milk? But domestic businesses, particularly those in the steel sector, have expressed deep concerns about any escalation in the trade battle.

"The measures announced today will help strengthen the competitiveness of Canada's steel and aluminum companies and contribute to economic growth while increasing the capacity of the industries to innovate, grow value added, support product and market diversification, and create and sustain jobs for Canadians".

These tariffs represent a total of $16.6 billion in Canadian countermeasures on imports of steel, aluminum, and other products from the United States.

Increasing funding to the provinces and territories to increase the capacity of the job and training programs available to workers affected by the USA measures.

- Investing $50 million to help companies diversify where their products are exported to.

"The United States is acting as a bully to a smaller country, and I think it would be hypocritical of me to sort of show up and accept their hospitality and free food and so on, when we are in the midst of this trade dispute that is going to have serious ramifications for the entire country and employment in this city", Mr. Watson told CTV earlier in the week, HuffPost reported. "That includes new extended work-sharing, to help employers avoid layoffs, and increased capacity for job and skills training programs for any workers who need them".

Bains, the economic development minister, said the support is aimed at helping firms adjust to the hard circumstances while enabling them to continue to innovate along the way.

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