Brazil’s President Jair M. Bolsonaro tweeted recently that he spoke with US President Donald Trump who decided not to proceed with the reinstated tariffs he threatened via a tweet on Dec 2. The levied tariffs would have annulled the quota agreement and restored the 25pc steel and 10pc aluminum tariffs on all US shipments as initially established in March 2018 against most countries. 

 

Trump initially accused the Brazilian government of intentionally devaluing its currency to improve its export position, but many economists and Brazil’a government officials have argued against that conclusion over the past few weeks.

 

The Trump administration had not activated official proceedings for establishing the import tariff timeline on Brazilian metal products and, therefore, an official statement beyond the tweets is not expected.   

 

The exact reason the current US administration cancelled the planned tariffs remains unclear. 

 

Bolsonaro and his son, a senator in Brazil, are embroiled in allegations of corruption and other social controversies in the country. The matters of corruption have plagued the Brazilian economy for the past several years as investigations have involved past presidents and executives of some of its largest private and public companies. 

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