US cuts Turkish steel tariffs by half to 25%

The US is slashing its tariffs on Turkish steel to 25 per cent from 50 per cent, reversing a controversial decision taken last summer by President Donald Trump to double them during a bitter row with Ankara.

The move by Mr Trump was announced on Thursday night and motivated by evidence of a sharp drop in steel imports from Turkey over the past year.

“Given these improvements, I have determined that it is necessary and appropriate to remove the higher tariff on steel imports from Turkey,” Mr Trump said in a statement. The decision was welcomed by Turkey’s trade minister, Ruhsar Pekcan, as “positive” but she said that Turkey had expected that “all obstacles to bilateral trade” would be lifted”. In August last year, Mr Trump imposed 25 per cent tariffs on steel and aluminium for a wide range of countries on national security grounds.