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Trump threatens escalation in Canada-US trade war following G7 summit

The Trump administration recently imposed a 25 per cent tariff on steel and a 10 per cent tariff on aluminum exports from Canada to the United States.

Now CTV reports, “On Saturday, not long after departing the G7 summit in Quebec, …[US President Donald] Trump sent two tweets that [threatened the United States was looking] ‘at Tariffs on automobiles flooding the U.S. Market!’ [adding] ‘Our Tariffs are in response to his of 270% on dairy!'”

That article adds, “A senior Liberal source [said] American-imposed tariffs on autos would be close to an existential threat to Canada’s economy [while former Quebec premier Jean] Charest said if he does follow through on autos, it ‘will be a catastrophe’, citing that 22 per cent of the cars sold in the US last year were exported from Canada.”

CBC further notes, “Trump says Canada will have to dismantle its supply-managed dairy system or else Americans will dramatically curtail its trading relationship.”

But Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has already stated “we will always defend our supply management system.”

The CBC adds, “Speaking of the stalled NAFTA negotiations, Trump again reiterated he prefers to sign a bilateral deal with Canada rather than push ahead with an agreement with the three original signatories.”

But the Trudeau government has also already categorically rejected the idea of a bilateral agreement.

So where to from here?

Last week, the Financial Post reported, “After the US announced it would impose the tariffs, a senior official told The Canadian Press that the chances of striking any deal on NAFTA – ever – had ‘just fallen through the floor’.”

Maude Barlow has previously tweeted, “Trump’s trade war has effectively killed NAFTA. …NAFTA is dead”

Peter Donolo, the former director of communications to prime minister Jean Chrétien, has written, “NAFTA – at least as we know it – is dead. …The reckless and crippling [tariff on steel and aluminum] is the murder weapon.”

And the Toronto Star’s parliamentary reporter Tonda MacCharles now comments, “There is no real path forward for what the next steps toward seriously resolving [the key issues in the NAFTA talks] should be.”

The Trudeau government says it will impose billions of dollars in tariffs in retaliation against the United States starting July 1.

Today Barlow tweeted, “It is time for Trudeau to walk away from NAFTA.”