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Connecticut Companies Watch Mounting Trade War Over Tariffs

U.S. Navy
The engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is among Connecticut's exports to multiple countries around the world

Many of Connecticut’s closest trading nations will be affected by new tariffs on steel and aluminum that the Trump administration says will go into effect at midnight tonight. 

In March, Donald Trump announced a 25 percent tariff on steel and 10 percent on aluminum coming from countries including Canada and the European Union nations.

Connecticut’s aerospace industry is one of its largest export industries, and it includes military programs like the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, being produced for several other countries around the world.

Second District congressman Joe Courtney said that the resulting retaliation from those trading partners could have big implications.

“For Connecticut in particular, if you look at the countries that are going to be subject to these tariffs, whether it’s Canada or the EU countries, those are the very same countries that Connecticut companies like United Technologies are selling engines to as part of the F-35 program,” he said. “And I really think that there’s probably a lot of nervous companies in the U.S. right now about the fact that there really could be blowback.”

Mexico, Canada, and the European Union are among the trading partners that have already announced duties on American goods in response.

Courtney said he believes any legitimate complaints the U.S. might have over steel and aluminum should be taken to the World Trade Organization.

Harriet Jones is Managing Editor for Connecticut Public Radio, overseeing the coverage of daily stories from our busy newsroom.

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