U.S. backs off aluminum tariff against Canada

Raw aluminum ingots. © Can Stock Photo / razvanmatei

The United States has rethought its position on imposing a tariff on Canadian aluminum.

According to Global News, the U.S. Trade Representative’s office announced Tuesday that it will lift the 10 per cent duty on aluminum.

“The United States has determined that trade in non-alloyed, unwrought aluminum is likely to normalize in the last four months of 2020, with imports declining sharply from the surges experienced earlier in the year,” read a release from the Trade Representative’s office, as reported by Global.

The announcement came hours after Canada revealed it would implement retaliatory tariffs on a series of American-made products. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it was a direct result of the U.S. imposing measures on Canadian-made aluminum.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, who had been expected to announce the retaliatory tariffs Tuesday afternoon, instead characterized the American decision as an instance where “common sense has prevailed”.

The tariffs were imposed by the U.S. last month and announced by President Donald Trump. The president had asked for a ten per cent tariff on Canadian aluminum in 2018, along with a 25 per cent duty on Canadian steel. The Canadian government had responded with a list of U.S.-made steel and aluminum products. The original tariffs were lifted in May 2019.