The governors of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont are calling on President Donald Trump to reverse a 10 percent tariff on imports of aluminum from Canada, citing a negative impact on manufacturers and businesses in northern New England.
“Businesses, big and small, have built complex, integrated supply chains in aerospace, information technology, construction materials, food systems and more,” the governors said in their letter dated Tuesday. “We strongly believe that this stance regarding Canadian aluminum will only hurt American manufacturers. It is time to look at solutions to elevate commerce on both sides of the border and not penalize key industries.”
The tariff initially was imposed in 2018, then lifted to make way for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. But Trump re-imposed the import tax on Canadian aluminum in August, raising tensions between the two allies.
Trump accuses Canada of flooding the U.S. market with its raw, unprocessed aluminum. The Aluminum Association, which represents U.S. and foreign aluminum companies and opposes the tariffs, counters that a jump in Canadian raw aluminum shipments to the United States is within historical norms and reflects stepped-up production from a Canadian smelter that had been shut down by a labor dispute.
Govs. Chris Sununu of New Hampshire, Janet Mills of Maine and Phil Scott of Vermont said the tariff will drastically raise costs and reduce competitiveness for aluminum-consuming industries in New England, disrupting manufacturing and technical production supply chains.
“Canada and New England share more than just a border, we are allies, business partners, colleagues and family,” the governors added.
About half of all trade for Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine companies is conducted with Canada.