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Mnuchin: Deal close to scrap Mexico, Canada steel tariffs

Mnuchin: Deal close to scrap Mexico, Canada steel tariffs
© Greg Nash
 
“I think we are close to an understanding with Mexico and Canada,” Mnuchin said in testimony to the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on financial services. 
 
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The administration is facing pressure to lift tariffs on the two countries from Republicans in Congress. 
 
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyOn The Money: Power players play chess match on COVID-19 aid | Pelosi bullish, Trump tempers optimism | Analysis: Nearly 1M have run out of jobless benefits Grassley: Voters should be skeptical of Biden's pledge to not raise middle class taxes GOP to Trump: Focus on policy MORE (R-Iowa) threatened last month to block passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, a trade pact intended to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Mexico and Canada, unless the administration lifts the steel and aluminum tariffs.
 
Grassley's panel has jurisdiction on trade issues. 
 
Trump imposed the steel and aluminum tariffs against a slew of trading partners last year, including Canada, Mexico and the European Union. Those countries have hit the U.S. with retaliatory tariffs.
 
Even after Trump struck a deal with Canada and Mexico to update NAFTA, the tariffs on steel and aluminum from those countries were kept in place.
 
Mnuchin said that lifting the tariffs with Canada and Mexico was a “priority” and that he and U.S. Trade Representative Robert LighthizerRobert (Bob) Emmet LighthizerWhiskey, workers and friends caught in the trade dispute crossfire GOP senator warns quick vote on new NAFTA would be 'huge mistake' Pelosi casts doubt on USMCA deal in 2019 MORE had been in talks with those countries’ finance ministers. 
 
Lifting tariffs on South Korea, however, had not been a central topic of discussion, he said.