U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday signed companion proclamations slapping 25 percent tariffs on steel coming into the country and 10 percent tariffs on imported aluminum.
The across-the-board taxes are to go into effect in 15 days.
Amid fears that his action would ignite a trade war, Trump declared the dumping of steel and aluminum in the United States as "an assault on our country," suggesting foreign producers relocate their facilities to America.
"If you don't want to pay tax, bring your plant to the USA," he said.
Trump was flanked in the Roosevelt Room by workers from those metals industries, some with hard hats in hand, as he signed the documents. Vice President Mike Pence, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and Trade and Industrial Policy Director Peter Navarro were also among those in the room.
After an outcry from lawmakers, some industry executives and foreign governments, Canada and Mexico are being given specific exemptions from the tariffs for an indefinite period while negotiations continue on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Source: VOA news