Trump Considering New Tariffs on Imported Cars and Trucks

  • Trump Considering New Tariffs on Imported Cars and Trucks

Trump Considering New Tariffs on Imported Cars and Trucks

President Donald Trump today ordered an investigation into the import of vehicles, including trucks, and auto-parts to determine their effects on the US' national security, a move that may lead to imposition of new tariffs on foreign manufactured automobiles.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced he initiated a so-called Section 232 investigation on auto trade - which would provide the legal basis to impose tariffs, if his department finds imports threaten United States national security - after speaking with Donald Trump on the matter.

The Trump administration used that authority in March to slap tariffs of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum imports.

Both countries are part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta), which the Trump administrations wants to renegotiate in a bid to boost the United States manufacturing sector.

Trump said in a statement Wednesday that the domestic auto industry is "critical to our strength as a nation".

Almost half of the vehicles sold in the US are imported, with many coming from assembly plants in Mexico and Canada.

The talks have been underway for more than nine months and now appear likely to continue into 2019, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said earlier this week. During a meeting with auto executives earlier this month, Trump said he would push for an increase in the production of vehicles built at USA plants.

Trump - whose protectionist platform helped launch him to the White House - has repeatedly floated the notion of steep tariffs that would shield the United States auto industry.

Trump has frequently lambasted China's high import duties on foreign cars.

Section 232 allows the president to impose trade restrictions on national security grounds.

By threatening a tariff on all imported cars, Mexico could be pressured into the tightening of the rules.

A person familiar with the matter told Breitbart News that the Commerce Department was expected to provide the White House with details of the plans late Wednesday. He noted that both Mexico and Canada have been "very hard to deal with" during the negotiations.

The president was asked about the status of the NAFTA talks. But he says, "we will win and will win big".