Mexico must evaluate ‘reciprocal measures’ to Section 232 outfall, Canacero says

The Mexican government must look into the reciprocal sanctions it can take against the United States if it is included in action resulting from that country’s Section 232 investigation into steel imports, national steel association Canacero has said.

“If [Mexico] is included in measures [resulting from the Section 232 investigation], we are obliged as a country to respond immediately with equivalent measures against imports from the USA,” the association said on Sunday February 18.

The US Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, said that his government is considering measures including tariffs and quotas, following his department’s Section 232 investigations into alleged national security issues related to steel imports.

The alternatives recommended to the US government by the Commerce Department are a global tariff or quota on steel imports, or tariffs on a set of 12 countries.

The options of global tariffs or quotas suggested by the department do not contain exemptions for the US’ trading partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) - Canada and Mexico.

Canacero warned that any measures taken by the US could affect Nafta renegotiations.

“Mexico should not be included in any [measures arising] from the Section 232 investigation… It does not represent any risk to US national security, because our industry does not receive subsidies and it is not a part of the global excess production capacity,” the organization said.

Last year, the US had a steel trade surplus of $3.40 billion with Mexico, while the total value of US steel exports to Mexico reached $9.80 billion in the same period, according to Canacero figures.

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