United States President Donald Trump on Friday reiterated his threat to levy “reciprocal taxes” on countries that impose high tariffs on imports from his country.
“When a country taxes our products coming in at, say, 50%, and we tax the same product coming into our country at ZERO, not fair or smart,” he tweeted on Friday, in apparent reference to India.
In February, Trump had criticised India for imposing a high import tax on Harley-Davidson motorcycles. He had said the US charges no tax on Indian bike imports, and that India’s new tax was an example of “unfair” trade practices.
“We will soon be starting RECIPROCAL TAXES so that we will charge the same thing as they charge us,” Trump added in his tweet. “$800 Billion Trade Deficit-have no choice!”
His tweet came a day after the US announced that from next week, it will levy 25% tariff on steel imports and a 10% tariff on imported aluminium.
The US president had in February said that the country must impose “reciprocal taxes” to fight back. “I’m not blaming India,” Trump had said while talking to lawmakers in the White House. “I think it’s great that they can get away with it. I don’t know why people allowed them to get away with it, but there’s an example that’s very unfair.”
Trump had first brought up the matter soon after taking office, during his inaugural address to a joint sitting of the US Congress in 2017. He had not named India then, but said the tariff on Harley-Davidson was so high that it put the brand at a disadvantage against its competition.