Ontario company cuts 40 jobs, blames U.S. steel tariffs
Published Friday, June 29, 2018 2:54PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, June 29, 2018 3:55PM EDT
A steel pipe manufacturer in northern Ontario announced Friday that it’s laying off approximately 40 workers as a result of U.S. tariffs.
Tenaris Algoma Tubes says the job cuts in Sault Ste. Marie are in response to the United States’ 25 per cent tariff on Canadian-made steel, which came into effect on June 1.
The company said in a statement that the tariffs have “created an unsustainable market to serve our U.S. customers.”
David McHattie, a director with Tenaris, said “the market outlook remains uncertain as we continue to understand the full-scale impacts of cross-border tariffs and due to the increase in imports to Canada from countries that have also lost the U.S. market as a result.”
The news comes the same day that Ottawa announced its final retaliatory tariff list, along with $2 billion in financial aid to the steel, aluminum and manufacturing industries.
The $16.6 billion in Canadian tariffs are meant to preserve jobs and put the squeeze on Republican politicians as mid-term elections approach, in the hopes they will convince President Donald Trump to rescind his administration’s tariffs.
The new measures, which start July 1, include a 25 per cent tariff on some U.S. steel and aluminum products, and a 10 per cent surtax on 70 other U.S. goods including whiskey, orange juice, washing machines, lawnmowers, coffee, yogurt, sleeping bags and motor boats.
Ken Neumann, national director of the United Steelworkers, was disappointed to hear of the loss of 40 jobs in Sault Ste. Marie and suggested that could be just the beginning.
There are 23,000 steelworkers in Canada and the industry supports about 100,000 more jobs indirectly, he told CTV News Channel. “These are good, middle class jobs,” he said.
Neumann warned that workers on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border will be hurt by the Trump administration’s actions, and he applauded the Canadian government for retaliating.
The retaliatory measures and support package, “sends the message to the United States that Canada is going to have the back of the steel communities, the steelworkers and the companies,” he said.
With files from CTV Northern Ontario