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February 25, 2019

Canada Ends Tariffs On Some Mexican Imports While Countries Continue To Oppose U.S. Penalties

While David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the United States, said last week that he expects the United States to lift its Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs on Canadian imports within “the next few weeks,” Canada’s Ministry of Finance went forward and eliminated its 25 percent steel tariffs that it had imposed on Mexican imports last fall.

While the finance ministry did not publish any notes regarding the decision, a description of the decision is available here. (Over this past weekend, the Mexican embassy in Ottawa released to CBC News a copy of the memorandum of understand between the two countries, which was signed backed in January.) As part of its new policy, Canada also increased the volume of energy tubular products and wire rod that could be imported from Mexico free of provisional surtaxes.

Meanwhile, the Mexican government also continues to discuss with the United States how to lift that country’s Section 232 tariffs. According to Politico, Guillermo Malpica, head of Mexico’s trade and NAFTA office in Washington, D.C., said that, after a “lapse without discussion” due to the December 2018 election of the new Mexican government, talks will now resume.