Ford’s Hinrichs says Trump tariffs make U.S. steel costliest in the world

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Hinrichs: "We tell them that we need competitive costs in our market to compete globally."

DETROIT – Ford Motor Co. raises its criticism of the metal tariffs of the Trump administration, which the company has already said to cost a profit of $ 1 billion.

"US steel costs are more than anywhere else in the world," said Joe Hinrichs, president of Ford's Global Operations, Monday at an event marking the start of production of Ranger pickups at a plant west of Detroit. He added that Ford talks to the administration about the rates. "We tell them that we need competitive costs in our market to compete globally."

Ford CEO Jim Hackett called President Donald Trump last month to quickly resolve trade disputes and warned that it would otherwise "cause more damage" to the second-largest US automaker. He said the company had raised roughly $ 1 billion in profits despite buying most of the materials from the US.

Domestic hot-rolled coil – the benchmark price for steel manufactured in the USA – has won 28% in 2018 when the Trump administration applied import duties. The levies increased the price to about $ 920 per ton earlier this year, the highest in a decade. American steel currently costs about $ 150 more per ton than steel in China, the world's largest consumer, accounting for more than half of global demand.