(Bloomberg) -- U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said some tariffs on imported goods can be effective, citing the steel levies enacted by the Trump administration as helping to counter an oversupply of the product from China.
“If China is not going to play by the rules, then there’s a place for tariffs, and they have been effective if you just look at how steel production has increased” in the U.S. since the taxes were put in place, Raimondo said Wednesday in an interview with Bloomberg News editors and reporters in Washington.
Raimondo said she didn’t necessarily disagree on policy with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who said recently that some tariffs on Chinese goods have hurt U.S. consumers.
To get a level playing field, “we sometimes have to use tariffs,” Raimondo said. “Sometimes tariffs can be very effective.”
The Trump administration’s 2018 tariffs on aluminum and steel, which it justified on national-security grounds, remain in place. Raimondo has previously defended them, but some American manufacturers have said they’ve hurt their business. The European Union is working toward having the U.S. lift the metal import tariffs by the end of the year, EU Ambassador to Washington Stavros Lambrinidis said last month.
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