U.S. Government Backs Down In Fight Over Canadian Aluminum Shipments

The U.S. government has backed down in its fight with Canada over aluminum shipments.

The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump has announced the removal of aluminum tariffs that it had imposed on Canada in August after Ottawa threatened retaliatory duties.

The 10% tariff on non-alloyed, unwrought aluminum was lifted a month after the Trump administration re-imposed them on Canada, citing a surge of imports coming from its northern neighbor. During the summer, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer expressed concerns about the recent struggles of American aluminum producers.

While the USTR announced the removal of the tariff, it said it expects shipments from Canada will be no greater than 83,000 tons in September and November and no greater than 70,000 tons in October and December, effectively signaling a quota. But Canada has not agreed to any volume limits on aluminum shipments to the U.S.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland told journalists Canada would drop the counter tariffs it threatened as retaliation, but left the door open for future measures if the U.S. imposed duties again in the future.

The office of the U.S. Trade Representative said it would reimpose the 10% tariff retroactively if actual shipments of Canadian aluminum exceed 105% of the expected volume for any month.