Quebec offers aid to lessen brunt of U.S. tariffs

(Assnat.qc.ca)

Montreal | Reuters — The Quebec government on Wednesday said it would spend $863 million over five years to mitigate the impact of U.S. tariffs on companies and the province’s agriculture sector.

The plan would provide direct financial aid to some companies affected by the tariffs and would support investments to improve productivity, worker training and boost market diversification, Quebec’s Liberal government said in a news release.

The Trump administration has imposed a 25 per cent tariff on steel and a 10 per cent tariff on aluminum imports from Canada and other nations, prompting retaliatory tariffs against the U.S..

In June, Quebec said it would offer $100 million in loans and loan guarantees to steel and aluminum companies hit by the U.S. tariffs.

Quebec’s Liberal government, which is facing an October provincial election, said the plan announced on Wednesday would support $3.1 billion worth of company investments in the province.

“The Quebec economy is today threatened by the Trump administration’s protectionist policies and their repercussions on the global economy,” Premier Philippe Couillard said in the release. “We are living in exceptional circumstances that demand an exceptional response.”

The measures announced Wednesday “reflect the necessity of maintaining the competitiveness of our agricultural enterprises and to help them in view of the shortage of labour affecting them,” Agriculture Minister Laurent Lessard said in the same release.

— Reporting for Reuters by Allison Lampert.

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