'Some men just like to watch the world burn': Volpe on Trump's Mexico tariffs
The head of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association says U.S. President Donald Trump’s latest tariff threat will serve as another hurdle in getting the new North American Free Trade Agreement ratified.
“Some men just like to watch the world burn. And there is no rhyme or reason to this. We’ve entered ratification season for NAFTA 2.0 in all three countries,” Flavio Volpe told BNN Bloomberg in an interview Friday.
“Trade is [in] the purview of Congress, and I see this as being another wrinkle in [Trump’s] ability to be able to ratify.”
Volpe’s comments came after Trump threatened to impose five-per-cent tariffs on imports from Mexico beginning June 10 in an effort to curb illegal immigration into the U.S., with the possibility of those levies increasing up to 25 per cent by October.
The move comes the same week leaders of Canada and Mexico have moved to legislate the renegotiated trade deal in their own countries. Meanwhile, Trump’s ability to ratify the continental agreement has come into question amid his ongoing squabbles with House Democrats.
In addition to putting the new trade deal at risk, Volpe said the tariffs will come at the expense of American consumers and companies, as Mexico supplies the majority of the United States’ car and auto-part imports.
“[Trump] is just pointing the gun right at his foot,” he said.
Volpe added that if the tariffs drag on, there would likely be some effect on Canadian manufacturers with a footprint in Mexico.
The automotive industry has already felt an impact from the looming tariffs, with shares of some of the world’s largest car companies – including General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. – trading lower Friday.