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U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE STUDY REPORTS ADDITIONAL $29 BILLION IN TRADE AID NEEDED
POLITICO reports:

The full cost of a government aid package to help U.S. all manufacturers, farmers and fishermen negatively affected by President Donald Trump's new tariffs on steel and aluminum from around the world and a host of products from China could reach $39 billion, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce reports this morning. That works out to be another $27 billion on top of the $12 billion the Trump administration announced last week to help U.S. farmers.

"While America's agricultural industry has been hit extremely hard by escalating tariffs, it's not alone," Neil Bradley, U.S. Chamber executive vice president and chief policy officer, wrote in a blog post. "Thousands of U.S. companies - including manufacturers, input suppliers, fisherman, and businesses from numerous other industries - are finding it more difficult to sell American made products abroad amid the growing trade war."

Other sectors are feeling the pain: The business group estimates that U.S. automobile, motorcycle and parts manufacturers would need up to $7.6 billion in federal aid if the assistance promised for farmers is extended to other sectors. Chemical manufacturers would need $960 million; prepared food manufacturers, $884 million; fishermen and crabbers, $811 million; soap manufacturers, $725 million; beverage manufacturers, $765 million; shipbuilders, $632 million; and furniture makers, $567 million.

Last week, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told lawmakers at a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing the administration had no plans "at this time" to extend its farmer aid package to other sectors.

Bradley, in the Chamber's blog post, made clear what the business group would really wants is for Trump to remove the tariffs and back off from the threat of imposing more. "The best way to protect American industries from the damaging consequences of a trade war is to avoid entering into a trade war in the first place," he said.

Steel needs help ... because of the steel tariffs?: Ironically, some of the biggest recipients of an expanded aid package could be two sectors, steel and aluminum, Trump set out to help with his tariffs. A number of countries have retaliated against U.S. steel and aluminum exports, so companies that produce steel and/or manufacture steel products could need $6.4 billion in federal aid and U.S. aluminum companies could need $2.4 billion, the Chamber said.


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