Some US industry analysts said it would not be easy, or cheap, for Mexico to switch to suppliers further afield than its northern neighbour. All members would also pledge to respect rules, and seek a reform of the World Trade Organization. Then he added: "It is totally unacceptable that a country is imposing unilateral measures when it comes to world trade".
On the eve of what's shaping up to be an acrimonious summit in Charlevoix, Que., Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emmanuel Macron offered support and "solidarity" with the US president's efforts to denuclearize North Korea, but they denounced his decision to impose steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.
"It is especially frustrating to see U.S. pork caught up in a dispute that has nothing whatsoever to do with pork trade", the U.S. Meat Export Federation said in a statement issued in anticipation of Mexico's retaliation.
The reasons for the war included United States frustration at the British forcing American merchant sailors into the Royal Navy, as well as trade restrictions on the US.
British Prime Minister Theresa May urged the European Union to stick to World Trade Organization rules and to ensure that any response to the tariffs was proportionate. But now this connection is publicly discussed by Western sources.
They acknowledged trade, tariffs, climate change and how to approach Iran remain sticking points, and may frustrate efforts to come to a final joint communiqué. Pleas by the other member countries for exemptions from the U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs, which went into effect on June 1, have fallen on deaf ears in Washington.
One source with knowledge of the matter said that Italy wanted to "create as much space as possible to continue the dialogue with the USA", noting that new Italian Prime Minister Guiseppe Conte, a political novice, would be treading carefully in Canada because he "needs to see the dynamics of the group". Germany has suggested making accommodations over trade with the United States for fear of triggering a ratcheting up of tensions over cars that would embroil companies like BMW and Mercedes.
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Canada in particular has been outraged by Trump's tariffs, taking umbrage at the argument that they were motivated by national security concerns.
"I didn't pay much attention to the quip; I focused on the message I was putting out, which was that it is inconceivable - and quite frankly insulting - that the United States considers Canada to be a threat to national security". The European Union also attends.
"We know there will certainly be frank and at times hard conversations around the G7 table, particularly with the American president on trade, on tariffs", he said.
Those new tariffs are in response to the Trump administration's decision to apply import taxes to steel and aluminum. He announced that the two nations would collaborate on initiatives on artificial intelligence. If the president of the United States and his companions expected the least "resistance" by Europe, they would not basically make such a decision.
Trudeau was also asked Thursday whether Canadians had indeed burned down the White House during the War of 1812, as Trump reportedly remarked in a post-tariffs phone call late last month with the prime minister.
Trump clearly believes he's being "tough" with these other countries, and protecting American jobs, with his ineptly-designed tariffs.
The escalating trade tension has prompted concern from US business sectors that face financial hits.