Trump drew on rarely used national security grounds to place a 25 percent tax on steel imports and 10 percent tax on imported aluminum.
"I think there's no question that the action the president took today is a further motivation to both Canada and Mexico to make a fair arrangement with the United States", Ross said in an interview on CNBC.
Both the U.S. invocation of national security and the EU's rejection of Washington's argument would be rare manoeuvres in WTO history and be a test of the trade arbiter's ability to resolve disputes between its largest members.
"We have a big deficit with Canada, too", Trump continued, though his own Council of Economic Advisers acknowledged in its recent annual report that, as Canadian officials have repeatedly said, the USA actually has a trade surplus with Canada. Then we would seek revenge. The largest exporter for steel and aluminum into the U.S.is Canada.
The references to security are critical. Countries have filed complaints about national security tariffs, but either the tariffs were dropped or the cases never proceeded.
The WTO's Dispute Settlement Body has never arbitrated a case filed under its national security clause - known as Article 21 - which was first enshrined after World War II in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).
She also downplayed a link made by Trump between NAFTA and the metals tariffs, saying they were separate issues.
Current and former White House officials often describe the president as being preoccupied with keeping campaign promises to his loyal supporters, even if those decisions are unpopular with a broader swath of Americans. This includes allies such as Japan, South Korea and the European Union, who have already voiced their plans for retaliation.
"A source familiar with the last-minute scramble likened it to a high-stakes, reality-show contest, with a drama-courting USA president at the centre of the production: "(It's a) last-episode-of-'The-Apprentice' kind of thing".
"They send in timber, they send in steel, they send in a lot of things". He did not explain how those round numbers managed to survive intact, even after the formula was later upended by the exclusion from tariffs of major suppliers. "Their excess capacity alone exceeds the total USA steel-making capacity".
"The Trump administration would mar its otherwise strong economic record by imposing these tariffs", Brandon said in a statement.
Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, meanwhile, called the announcement a "step forward" and said Canadian officials had exerted tremendous efforts to get the exemption.
Ginn contends NAFTA could be much better but it's not as destructive to the USA economy as its critics suggest. He discussed the tariffs by telephone on Friday with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia and President Mauricio Macri of Argentina, the White House said.
"This work continues and it will continue until the prospect of these duties is fully and permanently lifted". "In terms of the NAFTA negotiation, that is a completely separate issue", Freeland said.
"We export 70 percent of the almond crop to other countries - it's our number one crop in Stanislaus County", said Stanislaus County Farm Bureau Executive Manager Wayne Zipser.
Moreover, the exemptions for Canada and Mexico are dependent on an agreement to address the threat to USA national security caused by their steel and aluminum exports to the US.
The pleas from a broad coalition of members including the European Union, Japan, Canada and Russian Federation came at the WTO's General Council meeting, according to a trade official with direct knowledge of the meeting.