Trump Vows to Block Sale of US Steel to Japanese Firm

Former President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he would “absolutely” block the planned sale of U.S. Steel to a Japanese firm, a move that recalls his tough protectionist policies for American manufacturing while in office.

In what are his first public remarks on Nippon Steel’s $14.9 billion deal to buy U.S. Steel, the former president said that, if he wins the race for the White House, he would “block [the deal] instantaneously. Absolutely.”

“We saved the steel industry. Now, U.S. Steel is being bought by Japan. So terrible,” said after a Jan. 31 meeting with the president of the Teamsters labor union in Washington, DC.

In 2018, President Trump imposed 25 percent tariffs on imported steel and 10 percent on imported aluminum from most countries, using Section 232 of a 1962 act that allows the president to restrict imports if they threaten national security. Free trade partners Canada and Mexico were later exempted from the tariffs.

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