TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese steel firms are worried that potential U.S. auto import curbs could have a major impact on demand for their products, the new head of an industry group said on Friday.
The Trump administration has launched a national security investigation into car and truck imports that could lead to new U.S. tariffs similar to those imposed on imported steel and aluminum in March.
“I was really shocked by the U.S. move,” Japan Iron and Steel Federation Chairman Koji Kakigi told a news conference.
“If Japanese auto exports of about 1.7 million units are shut out by the U.S. market, it will have significant impact on Japanese steel demand,” said Kakigi, who is also president of JFE Steel which is under JFE Holdings Inc.
Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Kim Coghill