Higher Steel and Aluminum tariffs could cause US-EU-Canada trade war and lower car sales

The US has potentially launched a trade war with heavy tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. Steel imports will carry a 25% tariff and aluminum imports 10%. Stock markets dropped and there were threats of retaliation from Canada and the EU.

The US is the world’s largest importer of steel. Germany and South Korea are the number two and three importers of steel. Currently, four times as much steel is imported by the US than it exports.

Steel production in the U.S. fell by 11% between 2014 and 2016, while demand has been increasing.

Over 25 years, the U.S. aluminum industry has shrunk from 23 operational smelters to five. There is now only one US aluminum smelter making the high-grade military alloys needed to make fighter jets.

Canada and the EU will not be able to export as much of their steel to the USA and China will try to send more steel to non-US markets.

The US car industry and global car markets are predicting that they will sell fewer cars because of higher prices of steel and aluminum.