Donald Trump receives report on car import threat

Donald Trump

A decision can be made in 90 days

US President Donald Trump has received the findings of an investigation into whether imported vehicles pose a national security threat, that could lead the US to impose tariffs. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has submitted his recommendations to Trump, the department stated on Sunday in Washington, without providing any insights into the findings. 

Trump has 90 days to decide if there is any action needed with regards to the findings. The investigation was started in May under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act, the same provision the administration used in 2018 to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum. The car probe covers imports of vehicles consisting SUVs, vans and light trucks, and also auto parts. American and foreign-based auto manufacturers have been lobbying in opposition to that. 

Ross had until Sunday to provide his findings to the president, who has the final say if tariffs should be imposed. Trump has talked about levying as much as 25% on foreign made vehicles. Companies have cautioned Trump that tariffs on car imports would damage the U.S. economy and disrupt the international auto industry. 

An auto trade war would be a blow to automakers from General Motors to Toyota, which have built their supply chains to take advantage of nations with low duties.

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