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Biden suggests he may block Nippon Steel deal, seeks to triple tariffs on Chinese steel

79 Comments
By CHRIS MEGERIAN and WILL WEISSERT

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79 Comments

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So much for free-market capitalism

15 ( +25 / -10 )

Free market for me, zero for thee

15 ( +24 / -9 )

Bad move. The US is embracing outdated protectionism, not free market capitalism.

US Steel is incredibly inefficient and will likely go under within a few years now - without the help of Nippon Steel. A lot of US jobs will now be lost.

13 ( +24 / -11 )

LOL. The "Free Trade" Giant has clay feet.

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

You never worked in a foundry,you do.not know the hard labor involved

-9 ( +6 / -15 )

Biden trying his best to sound like Trump, while they do everything they can to shut him down. Bit late in the game now democrats. You’ve exposed yourselves for what you are, represent and the damage you can do with your flakey policies, identity politics and culture wars. Now trying to pretend you stand for the working class steel mill worker? What a clown. You must think the world is full of mugs.

America, do your thing. Retire these jokers.

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

So the US is now a protectionist, anti-democratic surveillance state. Tell us something new......

4 ( +17 / -13 )

Elections does MAGIC, good move.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

It's a national security issue. It would raise eyebrows in any country if the largest steel producer was to be acquired by a foreign entity.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

China will now add tariffs to US exports to China, affecting the US labour market negatively

Lose/lose situation for all.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

I guess that means Japan is an arms-length ally. OK as a distant military shield, less so closer to home.

The Global South and unaligned smaller nations will be getting their cheap energy, aluminium and steel, and everything produced cheaply with it - green transition kit like turbines - from the BRICS bloc, and turning away from the West. Biden is making America expensive again. It might work for Apple, it won't work for America in general. Inflation is the ultimate regime killer.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

So much for free-market capitalism

Anyone who believes in the rhetoric of free-market capitalism is severely naive.

American industry, and other countries for that matter is and always has been built on protectionism.

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/americas-history-protectionism-18093

It is one of those convenient fictions like equality under the law, rules based orders, meritocracy and trickle down economics.

2 ( +11 / -9 )

Just pandering for votes.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

BlacklabelToday  08:09 am JST

Just pandering for votes.

Implying that isn't the entire Trump method of operation. His entire abortion stance is pandering for votes.

6 ( +15 / -9 )

Nevermind, once election pass, nobody cares anymore.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Why would we want to import Chinesium anyway? Let the Chinese keep they're fourth-grade "metal".

1 ( +9 / -8 )

So much for free-market capitalism

You do realize free market capitalism and government intervention in the market aren’t mutually exclusive, right?

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

I know little about steel and marketing. But why would the U.S let another country control their steel? Wouldn't that make them beholden to the other country like Europe was to natural gas from Russia? I'm just asking.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

So much for Kishida's visit. In some ways this is reminiscent of the time when Japanese auto manufacturers built production plants in the U.S. The workers did not become unionized under the UAW because the pension, benefits and pay package were better than what the union could provide. It also provided direct contact between management and the workers rather than going through the union. To make this work, Japan has to wait until the election politicking is over and then present their compensation package to the workers and let them decide. The shareholders are already on board with this.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

LOL. The "Free Market" speech is for anyone but the USA, just wind in front of their mouth.

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

Say anything to cater to the blue collar voters.

But the white collar who can see beyond their paychecks know that China already produces 50% of the world's steel. Chinese steel is on average 40% cheaper than US made steel. Without this move with Nippon Steel, US Steel is destined to become exinct, the way many US industries have become in the face of Chinese government backed and supported exports.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Anyone who believes in the rhetoric of free-market capitalism is severely naive.

You criticized Trump for being against it months ago but now that Biden is your tune changes. Why?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Implying that isn't the entire Trump method of operation. His entire abortion stance is pandering for votes.

Strangely, article isn’t about Trump. But thanks for the less than 60 second off topic and obsessive reply.

-4 ( +8 / -12 )

Foreign ownership of US steel is distastefull in the US. Biden excoriated Trump for wishing to increase tariffs on China. Now he has to pander to unions using the same tactic

4 ( +6 / -2 )

japanese industries will suffer from this nationalism....

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Trump is so gonna win this election.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Trump is so gonna win this election

Because Biden and Trump agree on blocking this deal?

Great point you made there.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Why would he...oh, it's an election year, I get it.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Just making some noise, none of this will happen, not under Biden anyway.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

At least US is protecting its Industry and Factories. Not like Europe, which imports EVERYTHING from China, at lowest quality possible, and natural resources from Russia or Ukraine. And funny enough, the imported stuff from China is sometimes 50% more expensive than in US...

0 ( +3 / -3 )

As for Nippon Steel's purchase bid, how about Biden stick to what he knows best? Keep your hands off the free market!

1 ( +5 / -4 )

LOL what kind of "capitalism" is that?

how about free market Joe?

It’s a fair point.

There are still people who believe in free markets in the US.

Biden and Trump clearly don’t.

You wonder who these people can turn to. I get the feeling that the US Republicans will return to at least pushing the idea of free markets post-MAGA.

Maybe they can wait.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It was a bad deal to begin with! Too many differences when it comes to the two companies in terms of operation and in the end the American steel workers would suffer while the Japanese Nippon company will end up losing a lot of money.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I don’t have a problem with nations protecting their steel industries.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I am not sure where this myth of "Free Market, Capitalism" etc... came from regarding the USA!

From the start going right back to George Washington the USA has practiced protectionism, from whiskey to cotton, corn, whale oil (yes that was a big thing before petroleum), to modern times with softwood lumber, iron ore, steel, cars, etc...

I remember the "buy American" campaigns and there have been several going all the way back to the 70s, it got so silly the in California the government broke a contract to buy Hitachi bulldozers and diggers, etc..paying a penalty and paying more to buy Caterpillar ones only to find out that the Hitachi machines were made in America and the caterpillar were made in Mexico!

Like most things the USA says and does, it is do as we say not as we do!

When is the world going to wake up and just cut them off ?

If countries would agree to boycott the USA, it wouldn't last a year without the raw materials and components from the rest of us!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

There are still people who believe in free markets in the US.

Biden and Trump clearly don’t.

What in the world makes you say this? It’s so obviously not true. You can have free markets while also having government intervention in the free market. Would you say that having any regulatory body means the market isn’t free? So if there’s a law preventing me from putting poison in your drinks if I’m a business, would you consider that against the free market?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Jim

Today 10:12 am JST

It was a bad deal to begin with! Too many differences when it comes to the two companies in terms of operation and in the end the American steel workers would suffer while the Japanese Nippon company will end up losing a lot of money

Sounds like the same false claims made back in the 80s when Japanese car makers started opening new and buying closed car factories in the USA, anti Japanese rhetoric from the news to Hollywood movies!

Funny thing nothing they claimed happened and to the contrary the Japanese Auto makers grew, USA workers got good jobs to the point that some Japanese car makers export cars built in the USA back to Japan.

But 40 years later I see the stereotyping haven't changed!

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

What in the world makes you say this? It’s so obviously not true. You can have free markets while also having government intervention in the free market. Would you say that having any regulatory body means the market isn’t free? So if there’s a law preventing me from putting poison in your drinks if I’m a business, would you consider that against the free market?

Of course there should be regulations regarding safety.

I’m talking about the government involving itself in matters of mergers and acquisitions, not safety regulations.

Do you believe the government should do this?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I’m talking about the government involving itself in matters of mergers and acquisitions, not safety regulations.

Do you believe the government should do this?

Absolutely. Monopolies for example are a bad thing.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Biden's polls/approval ratings are abysmal. Thus he is adopting Trump's policies.

It took Biden over a month after Trump to even indicate he would oppose the merger while he triangulated.

Tariffs on Chinese steel - give us a break - Trump did that years ago.

And in both cases when Trump did it he was mocked by democrats. Now that Biden is doing it, will they admit Trump was right all along?

Don't hold your breath!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Another tax on Americans. That’s who pays for terriffs the Trump and Biden policies of tariffs on Japan and China products have not hurt Japan and China. In fact chinas economy is still growing. Japan is just aging so the economy will continue to decrease. The real impact is on the consumer in America, who is being passed on these tariff prices as the imports continue. Nothing stops. The import are l needed by the business in America. so tariffs are not punishing China or Japan or whoever. They are punishing Americans, and until America wakes up on what tariffs mean the economy will continue to be sluggish and inflation increasing and we’re talking about this on a Japan website. The deal with Japan steel saves the company. There is a two-year retain of employment built into the deal. I have read it will still be under American management. This is all the PR stunt. And it’s not helping America at all. It could be England Italy, France, Japan, China the American protectionism is in full force. History is repeating itself and not in a good way.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Try buying a Japanese if you're foreign entity.... more than 400 Japanese companies, many not industrial, will only allow 10% max foreign ownership set by the Government of Japan. So if anyone in Japan is disappointed they need to look at their own laws and conduct in the past and present first.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

not much chinese steel or aluminum is imported directly to the usa. china has a surplus now, it exports to other countries and still finds its way to the usa through them - without tariffs.

trump started to march to inflation by imposing a 25% tariff that was, and is paid by the importing company, not china as trump said. the man can’t tell the truth, or is woefully ignorant. same result.

if you squint real hard, you might find a few more jobs with higher tariff, but more likely higher costs.

it’s like countries are run by 15-year olds.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

SaikoPhysco

> Today 10:34 am JST

> Try buying a Japanese if you're foreign entity.... more than 400 Japanese companies, many not industrial, will only allow 10% max foreign ownership set by the Government of Japan. So if anyone in Japan is disappointed they need to look at their own laws and conduct in the past and present first

Ok! Can you name some?

You will find they are in one of several "sensitive" industries like military equipment, telecommunication, financial, etc... and the same applies in the USA, Canada, EU, UK, etc...

Foreign ownership of security, and telecommunication are exempt from WTO based on security reasons.

BTW your list of 400 Japanese companies is closer to 4000 in the USA because of the massive defense industry!

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

American xenophobia politics when election year. Thanks to Donald Trump, politics has never been so cheap like this !

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

There are a lot of non-Americans upset about this, and some of them are from or support countries unfriendly to the US.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Personally, I hope the sale goes through, as economically it will benefit me.

But I can't begrudge Biden wanting to protect American steel and keeping it local.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

UChosePoorly

Today 11:11 am JST

There are a lot of non-Americans upset about this, and some of them are from or support countries unfriendly to the US.

But most of us are from countries that are supposedly the USA's best friends and allies that are constantly being bullied (I wanted to use a different world) by the USA.

Funny when the USA steel company had a 50 year contract to mine and buy Canadian iron ore at 1¢ a ton they were happy had no problem, but when that contract ended and Canada stared using the ore to make value added steel, suddenly it became "unfair" that the Canadian steel makers were paying a lower price for the iron ore, which BTW was not the 1¢ per ton the USA paid for 50 years, but was far higher and closer to international market prices!

The hypocrisy of the USA is never ending!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Lets do a 180 and pose this question. Would the Japanese government allow Nippon Steel to be sold to a foreign company? This is a rhetorical question as we all know the answer so lets be intellectually honest about this issue!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The steel industry was the backbone of America's prosperity and power in the past one hundred years. And so, it must be unbearable for the Americans to see one of the major locomotives sold to a foreign firm.

Note, however, that the shareholders of the company have decided the dealing was the best measure for the company to keep on operating. Would Biden's interference in the private business dealings and imposing tariffs on Chinese iron products as much as three times be successful?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

TaiwanIsNotChina

Today 11:47 am JST

And a lower gdp per capita.

And is that a measure of comfort and happiness?

A lower GDP without having to worry about bankruptcy if you get sick, or being able to get a higher education even if you are not rich, far outweigh any disadvantages of a lower GDP!

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Biden vows to block Nippon Steel deal, seeks to triple tariffs on Chinese steel

LOL

Nice strong MSM Biden fluff story, however meaningless it is to average Americans. How about the illegals?

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

I presume the USA continues to purchase large amounts of iron ore from Russia ?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Anyone who believes in the rhetoric of free-market capitalism is severely naive.

yep. we should have free market capitalism not just talk about it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I can see a Nippon steel foundry in Himeji from my window. Steam blowing upwards. It employs many hundreds of locals.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Yemen. He is from Yemen.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Look at photos 8 and 20 - Biden at a wall of remembrance. He twice told a very interesting tale about the name he is touching. WP and others new outlets reported on what he said and did some fact checking. Quite a few red flags.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

American xenophobia politics when election year. Thanks to Donald Trump, politics has never been so cheap like this !

He’s actually not the real problem.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

yep. we should have free market capitalism not just talk about it.

What a load of bologne^^^. Steel and Alum were deemed essential security under the The Trump administration, and resulted in no WTO dispute, Biden simply continued the policy.

All over the globe, countries manages energy and metals (like steel) for national security. Free trade, or more specifically regulated trade under WTO have always allowed for exceptions under article 11.

You want to talk unfair trade? What about the supposed auto semiconductor shortage because of China covid lockdown, shortage that affected mosted non-Chinese brands.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good for old ‘Smokin’ Joe’… some things shouldn’t be ‘sold’ to foreigners, whether that be the Japanese or any other nationality.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Retire you fossil!

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

At what costs??

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Build Back Better is actually Make America Great Again plus dementia. Who could have seen it.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

neroToday 03:37 pm JST

Build Back Better is actually Make America Great Again plus dementia. Who could have seen it.

Nah, Make America Great Again includes sprinklings of ignorance, bigotry, and treason.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Strangely, article isn’t about Trump. But thanks for the less than 60 second off topic and obsessive reply.

Did you manage to read as far as paragraph 2?

For the record I think they are both wrong on this. How about you?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Biden ... called for a tripling of tariffs on Chinese steel, seeking to use trade policy to win over working-class votes in the battleground state of Pennsylvania.

If Chinese steel has been such a big trade-policy issue, why is Biden calling for a tripling of tariffs just now? Why didn't he do it during any of the previous three years he's been president?

I think the words in bold face above provide the answer.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

If Chinese steel has been such a big trade-policy issue, why is Biden calling for a tripling of tariffs just now? Why didn't he do it during any of the previous three years he's been president?

I think the words in bold face above provide the answer.

Welcome to politics. How often do you think 45 went to bodega or chick-fil-a during his term?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Biden is finally flexing his powerful presidential muscles. Looking good!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Biden vows to block Nippon Steel deal, seeks to triple tariffs on Chinese steel

Does it mean the U.S. ingot costs three times more than the Chinese one? Suppose the Chinese ingot is not only cheaper but it is also superior in quality

Which one will sell more in international markets, U.S. ingot or Chinese one?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Nah, Make America Great Again includes sprinklings of ignorance, bigotry, and treason.

No, it means wake up, focus on America first and foremost, putting all Americans ahead and cater to their needs first and above all else, loyalty to the nation, and that’s a good thing.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

bass4funkToday 04:40 pm JST

Nah, Make America Great Again includes sprinklings of ignorance, bigotry, and treason.

No, it means wake up, focus on America first and foremost, putting all Americans ahead and cater to their needs first and above all else, loyalty to the nation, and that’s a good thing.

Abandoning our allies is not even loyalty to our own nation.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

voiceofokinawaToday 04:31 pm JST

Biden vows to block Nippon Steel deal, seeks to triple tariffs on Chinese steel

Does it mean the U.S. ingot costs three times more than the Chinese one? Suppose the Chinese ingot is not only cheaper but it is also superior in quality

Thankfully that will never happen.

Which one will sell more in international markets, U.S. ingot or Chinese one?

Almost doesn't matter: when you are the size of the US or China, you can afford to be protectionist.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

No, it means wake up, focus on America first 

Woke? Oh boy. Hey isn’t Biden doing the America first bit with Chinese tariffs and blocking Nippon steel?

Supporting Biden and woke. I’m glad we finally agree on something.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Abandoning our allies is not even loyalty to our own nation.

Abandoning your nation is worse than treason.

Woke? Oh boy. Hey isn’t Biden doing the America first bit with Chinese tariffs and blocking Nippon steel?

Every dog finds a bond here and there if they sniff long enough

Supporting Biden and woke. I’m glad we finally agree on something.

Don’t support Biden, but yes, he’s woke.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Biden suggests he may block Nippon Steel deal,

Title of article suggests he may actually mean it

0 ( +0 / -0 )

*aiming to insulate American producers from a flood of cheap import direct from china *

the writer forgot to add

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Abandoning your nation is worse than treason.

Many people would say that leaving your nation of birth to then spend several decades primarily living in a foreign country could be defined as ‘abandoning your nation’.

But I guess you have a different take on it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Abandoning your nation is worse than treason.

How could mere abandonment be worse than treason?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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