Italy decries steel and United States steel and aluminium tariffs

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

The EU threatened to make good on a threat it issued in March to impose tariffs on imports from the US that is 10 pages long, including everything from corn and tobacco, to T-shirts, Levi's jeans, bourbon, motor boats and various forms of steel.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday dubbed trade tariffs imposed by the United States as insulting and unacceptable.

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said the United States has only a few days to avoid sparking a trade war with its allies and it is up to Washington to make a move to de-escalate tensions over tariffs.

Industry representatives were reluctant to comment publicly, with several saying it was too early to know for certain how they would be affected by the USA tariffs - as well as the retaliatory measures introduced later in the day by the Trudeau government.

Top European officials held last-ditch talks in Paris with American trade officials to try to avert USA tariffs on steel and aluminum.

Besides the US steel and aluminum tariffs, the Trump administration is also investigating possible limits on foreign cars in the name of national security.

TORONTO-Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Thursday he offered to go to Washington to complete talks on renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) but that Vice President Mike Pence called and told him a meeting with the USA president would only happen if Trudeau agreed to put a five-year sunset clause into the deal. The President granted temporary exemptions to a handful of countries, giving them time to negotiate permanent exclusions in exchange for accepting restrictions on how much of the metals they could sell to the United States.

Mr Morneau said Canada's government is not ready to discuss support or potential bailout packages for Canadian business sectors affected by the tariffs.

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But he said that those "who waged bilateral trade wars. saw an increase in prices and an increase in unemployment". Canada is also considering imposing levies on high-profile USA -made consumer goods and luxury items, with the goal of hurting the United States in a visible way without damaging Canada's economy by restricting necessary imports.

Fears of a trade war between the US and its allies were bolstered by the talk that US President Donald Trump is also seeking to levy imports of German cars; the tariffs would be similar to those on steel and aluminum.

But after totaling the value of Canada's list of USA goods subject to tariffs using import data, Business Insider found that the value of these exports is equal to roughly just over $15 billion USA dollars, or 19 billion Canadian dollars.

Canada, Mexico and Europe had been exempted until June 1 from import duties of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminum when they were first imposed in March. Those values are roughly equal to that of the Canadian steel and aluminum exports to the US. The EU has vowed to hit back with retaliatory tariffs. "We will respond appropriately".

Ross criticized the European Union for its tough negotiating position.

France's finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, called the US tariffs "unjustified, unjustifiable and unsafe".

"It has been a tense and tough G7 - I would say it's been far more a G6 plus one than a G7", said Le Maire, who called the tariffs "unjustified".

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