Japan's steel industry on Monday urged President Donald Trump to make an appropriate decision following the Department of Commerce's recent report outlining heavy tariffs on imports to protect the US steel and aluminium industry.
The proposals came after an investigation by the Commerce Department found "that the quantities and circumstances of steel and aluminum imports threaten to impair the national security.”
The department recommended a range of global and country-specific tariffs on all steel and aluminium imports. Trump has until 11 April to make a decision on the recommendations put forward.
Japan Iron and Steel Federation Chairman Kosei Shindo said in a statement, “The recommendations violate the principles of free trade, which are the foundation for development and prosperity of the global economy.”
According to Reuters, Japan exports about 2 million tonnes of steel products a year to the US accounting for about 5% of total steel shipments exported.
The Department of Commerce's recommendations have been criticised for its protectionist bent and the potential to disrupt and cause an increase in raw materials.
China over the weekend also called the proposals "groundless" and that it reserved the right to retaliate if they are imposed.