U.S. steel tariffs cause layoffs in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

SAULT STE. MARIE, ONT.—A manufacturing company says it’s laying off workers in Ontario in response to American tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum.

A spokesperson for Tenaris, which manufactures seamless steel pipes, says 40 workers at the company’s mill in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., will be laid off on Sunday due to changes in the export market.

“The environment is very uncertain and as such we do not have other plans,” McHattie said.

Luca Zanotti, president of Tenaris’s U.S. operations, told The Associated Press on June 25 that the company’s operations in Texas were trying to be excluded from the tariffs.

The company churns out steel pipe in a state-of-the-art facility that began operating late last year, using solid rods of steel called billets that are made in its mills in Mexico, Romania, Italy and Argentina.

Zanotti declined to say how much the company would have to pay because of the tariff.

On Friday, the Canadian government released an extensive final list of $ 16.6 billion worth of American imports that would be subject to retaliatory tariffs that come into effect on July 1. There will be a 10-per-cent tariff on everyday items such as ketchup and playing cards along with aluminum products, while tariffs on steel will be 25 per cent.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will visit a manufacturing facility in Leamington, Ont. as the tariffs take effect on Canada Day.

Also announced on Friday was $ 2 billion in aid for the Canadian steel, aluminum and manufacturing sectors to help businesses retain skilled workers and avoid layoffs by extending the work-sharing agreements under the employment insurance program by 38 weeks.

Some domestic businesses have expressed concern about the trade war, predicting that it could raise consumer prices in both Canada and the U.S. and could put jobs at risk.

With files from The Associated Press

TORONTO STAR

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