Trump suggests car imports may be the next target for tariffs

Posted at 8:46 PM, May 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-23 21:46:52-04

President Donald Trump is laying the groundwork for a new international trade battle -- this time over cars.

Trump said in a statement late Wednesday that he has asked Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to consider investigating whether automobile imports are hurting US national security.

The type of investigation Trump is suggesting, known as Section 232, is the same approach the White House took before it slapped tariffs on steel and aluminum imports earlier this year.

"Core industries such as automobiles and automotive parts are critical to our strength as a Nation," Trump said in a statement. He suggested the investigation should include cars, trucks and auto parts.

The steel and aluminum tariffs angered US allies like the European Union and drew retaliatory measures from China.

The US government has granted some key trading partners -- including the EU, Canada and Mexico -- temporary exemptions from the tariffs.