Province will continue to stand up for Island companies following new trade tariffs
The provincial government supports the federal government’s response to new steel and aluminum tariffs announced by the United States and will continue to defend the interests of Island companies.
The province will engage with industry members and associations over the coming days to discuss the specific anticipated effects of the new tariffs and how Island businesses can be further supported.
Prince Edward Island companies exported more than $1 billion in goods and services to the United States for the first time in 2017. Those exports were part of the fourth-straight record year for international exports from the province. The province has worked closely with the federal government during ongoing NAFTA negotiations to ensure supply management is protected and that the interests of all Island businesses are well represented.
“Our Island companies are innovative and resilient and we are confident that will continue to build on their success, even in light of these new tariffs. However, we must ensure that the effects of any tariffs unfairly imposed by the United States are minimized,” said Economic Development and Tourism Minister Chris Palmer. “Although the amount of raw steel and aluminum we ship directly to the United States is quite low, it will be impacted by these tariffs. We will also work to support Island companies that have developed integrated supply chains with suppliers of goods manufactured from steel and aluminum in the United States.”
Island companies that do metal fabrication and manufacturing depend on suppliers in the U.S, and those U.S. suppliers will have to pay more for raw product shipped from Canada because of the new tariffs.
The costs associated with these tariffs will affect not only existing contracts but also potential additional costs for key inputs moving forward. The provincial government will also work with Island companies that may feel the effects further downstream, including the food sector.
“We will potentially face increased costs because we import specialized dairy equipment and tanks from the U.S. for many of our plants and packaging of our products,” said Chad Mann, ADL business development manager. “Many of these processing equipment products are made from stainless steel and aluminum. We are very appreciative of the province for its continued support in dealing with these trade actions and we remain confident that provincial officials will continue to represent the interests of P.E.I. dairy producers and processors.”