#Canada, #Quebec; #loans; #steelandaluminiumcompanies; #DominiqueAnglade, #DonaldTrump
Ottawa, June 12 (Canadian-Media): Quebec, province of Canada made an offer on Monday of loans and guarantees on loans, to steel and aluminum companies hit by recent United States (U.S.) tariffs, amounting to C$100 million ($77.1 million), media reports said.
The impact of the U.S steel and aluminium tariffs on metals was felt more keenly than the 2017 U.S. announcement of tariffs on softwood lumber, said Quebec's Economy Minister Dominique Anglade,
Dominique Anglade. Image credit: Twitter handle
Although Quebec's economy was not much impacted by U.S steel and aluminium tariffs, the real cause of concern was the unpredictability of U.S. President Donald Trump's trade policy.
Reporters in Montreal learnt from Anglade that introduction of the program took place only after aluminum and steel companies received feedback from clients' reluctance to pay the tariffs.
“What they’re telling us is some of their contracts were canceled,” she said, adding some had already slowed down production.
Owing to this fact, many Canadian companies across the country felt that they reconsider their investment plans.
“The value of the impact is hard to assess,” Anglade added. “We’re seeing something that we haven’t seen in softwood lumber.”
Quebec government's initial step of offering $100 million loan to the companies would reportedly be followed by holding another meeting next week with stakeholders to reassess the situation.
Quebec government wanted to protect of 30,000 workers, currently employed by Quebec's steel and aluminum industries, from any layoffs, Anglade said.
"What's going to be really important is to stay agile and be connected to what the companies are telling us," she said.
"We want to protect the interests of the workers, as well."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)