The US has said it will impose tougher tariffs on Chinese aluminium alloys after an investigation into the trade.
Capping a tumultuous day at the White House yesterday, the President slapped a 25% tariff on steel imports and 10% on aluminium.
In a statement, the US Aluminum Association said: "We appreciate the President’s commitment to strengthening the U.S. aluminium industry. We look forward to working with the President on implementation and to creating a more level playing field."
While the European Aluminium Association has called on the European Commission and EU Member States to protect the aluminium industry.
Gerd Götz, Director General of European Aluminium said: "“We regret President Trump’s decision to impose a tariff on all aluminium imports independent of their country of origin. European aluminium exports to the US, in view of both their quantity and characteristics, do not pose any threat to US national security. Most importantly, this blanket tariff does not address the root cause of the main challenges faced by the aluminium industry today: the unsustainable and steady increase of aluminium overcapacities in China. This global challenge can only be managed effectively through a global and long-term solution based on multilateral rules and common enforcement such as the creation of a Global Aluminium Forum within G20.”
According to reports, the move sets the US on a collision course with major steel producer China, whose top trade official, Lui He, is in Washington for talks. China has indicated it could retaliate by targeting US agricultural exports such as soybeans. Canada has also condemned Trump’s decision.