Quebec industry 'surprised' and 'frustrated' by Trump's decision on aluminum tariffs
MONTREAL -- The Quebec government intends to defend its aluminum industry and is calling Donald Trump's decision to impose a 10 per cent tarrif on exports unjustified.
Trump announced that he would impose the tariff Aug. 16 claiming Canada dumps unprocessed aluminum on the market.
CEO of Quebec Manufacturers and Importers Veronique Proulx said Trump is misusing the term and not honouring the rules of the new NAFTA agreement.
"We're allowed to export a certain volume of alluminum products and aluminum alloys and right now we're respecting this agreement," she said. "What Donald Trump is doing is using the 232 Article, which he can use to say that our aluminum exports represent a problem for the national security, which of course isn't true. We're a strategic partner of the US, and the US government."
Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said Friday that Canada will hit back with $3.6 billion in countermeasures on a list of American products.
Quebec Minister of Economy and Innovation Pierre Fitzgibbon and Minister of International Relations Nadine Girault said in a news release that Trump's move will have negative spillover on both sides of the border.
The release from the ministry of the economy says that the tariffs will "generate additional costs in the order of tens of millions of dollars."
Proulx said the move has left the industry feeling frustrated, and it will do nothing positive for either nation's manufacturers.
"Our manufacturers in Quebec feel that this is very unjustified and very surprised as well," she said. "This situation isn't good for everybody. The North American market is very much integrated, so when the US imposes tariffs on Canadian products, it affects the Canadian market."