Trump may exempt more countries from tariffs: Treasury's Mnuchin

The ASX is expected to have a flat start to the day after losses on Wall Street

The ASX is expected to have a flat start to the day after losses on Wall Street

Germany on Friday urged multilateral talks to address overcapacity in the steel sector and said it supports the European Union's plans to respond if U.S. President Donald Trump presses ahead with tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.

"If they drop their horrific barriers & tariffs on United States products going in, we will likewise drop ours".

In announcing a 25 per cent tariff on steel and 10 per cent levy on aluminum Thursday, the US president exempted Canada and Mexico "at least at this time" and cited close ties between the three nations. Under World Trade Organization rules, such counter-measures have to be in place within 90 days of the US tariffs entering force.

"If you do that, kiss good-bye any possibility of. well, basically anything", the official added.

Canada's steel and aluminum trade relationship with the US a week ago.

Metals producers have had a wild ride since the tariffs were first discussed over a week ago. Mr Trump took to Twitter on Saturday morning to say he'd spoken with the prime minister.

Adding new elements to the negotiations to create wiggle room on big decisions was a Trump tactic familiar to David Bozell, a supporter of the president.

Trump insisted in a phone call with French President Emmanuel Macron — a leading European Union player staunchly opposed to the tariffs — that the "decision is necessary and appropriate to protect national security".

"The president has a deep economic bench", Mnuchin said.

There are a handful of Democrats who are on board with Trump's move, though. Sen.

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"We didn't know exactly what the exclusion was until it got announced", Gerard, who is Canadian, told Reuters.

"We're doing tariffs on steel".

"I can assure that President Trump is going to be no Herbert Hoover".

The European Commission, which coordinates trade policy for the 28-nation EU, the world's biggest trading bloc, has said it is ready to impose safeguards, tariffs or quotas to protect its own steel and aluminium industries from products diverted to Europe because of the USA measures.

Canadian cabinet members also kept phone lines "humming" with their US counterparts in an all-out push that recalled a lobbying effort in April 2017 to persuade Trump not to withdraw from NAFTA but to pursue re-negotiations instead. We can not guarantee that it is suitable for the visually or hearing impaired. "Do you know quite how much USA steel Canada buys?" said another person familiar with Canada's lobbying effort.

Tusk's tough words came after the European Union unveiled a raft of countermeasures that will hit a huge range of flagship USA exports - from jeans to motorbikes to cranberries - with duties if Trump acts on his threat to impose heavy tariffs on steel and aluminium.

Notwithstanding, Trump remains as steadfast and defiant as ever.

"As long-standing security partners of the U.S., (the European Union and Japan) underlined to ambassador Lighthizer their expectation that European Union and Japanese exports to the United States would be exempted from the application of higher tariffs", an European Union statement said after the talks.

Foreign steel producers are not only concerned about losing access to the USA market but also that steel from other exporters will flood already saturated markets, threatening jobs elsewhere.

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