Mnuchin: Tariffs Won't Apply to Mexico, Canada if Nafta is Reworked

03/06/18 12:12 PM EST
By Kate Davidson 

WASHINGTON -- Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told lawmakers Tuesday new tariffs on steel and aluminum wouldn't apply to Canada and Mexico if the U.S. is able to successfully renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.

"To the extent that we're successful in renegotiating Nafta, those tariffs won't apply to Mexico and Canada," Mr. Mnuchin said in response to questions at a House hearing Tuesday, echoing remarks President Donald Trump said on Twitter on Monday.

Mr. Mnuchin said the administration is trying to balance protecting the U.S. steel and aluminum industries "with making sure we don't do undue harm to the economy." He also acknowledged Canada is a significant U.S. steel trading partner.

"We are not looking to get into trade wars," he said, adding that he had conversations about those concerns with several of his international counterparts. "We are looking to make sure U.S. companies can compete fairly around the world."

GOP lawmakers praised Mr. Mnuchin at Tuesday's hearing for the recent enactment of a $1.5 trillion tax cut, but grilled him on the administration's tariff plans.

Asked if he supported the tariff proposal, Mr. Mnuchin said, "I am supportive of the mechanism as the president has announced and I look forward to him announcing the specific details."

Write to Kate Davidson at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 06, 2018 12:12 ET (17:12 GMT)

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