Canada must stand up against U.S. trade aggression

March 1, 2018

Canada’s unions are calling on federal and provincial governments to vigorously defend Canada’s steel and aluminum industries and their workers.

The call comes after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to impose duties of up to 25% on steel imports, and 10% on aluminum imports. Key details, such as whether fair-trading allies such as Canada will be excluded from duties, have yet to be disclosed.

“The steel sector is one of Canada’s key economic drivers and employers, directly and indirectly supporting good jobs in nearly every region in Canada,” said CLC President Hassan Yussuff.

“If Canada were included in this aggressive trade action, it would affect workers and businesses on both sides of the border. It would decimate Canada’s steel industry and impact the lives of 22,000 workers directly employed by the industry, and another 100,000 indirectly employed workers,” he added.

Every year, Canada exports $6 billion worth of steel products to the U.S., and, because of the integrated nature of the North American steel industry, imports steel products of the same value from the U.S. Last year, Canada exported $9.3 billion worth of aluminum products to the United States.

Canada’s steel industry is also responsible for millions of dollars worth of research and development throughout the economy.

“Federal and provincial governments must vigorously defend the interests of Canadian workers and businesses by demanding that U.S. president Trump exclude fair-trading allies such as Canada,” said Yussuff.

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