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Wilbur Ross: Trump to take 'thoughtful' approach to potential metals tariffs

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said President Donald Trump will take a "very thoughtful and systematic" approach to making a decision over potential tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, adding Trump will not rush the directive, Bloomberg News reported Feb. 22.

In an interview with CNBC, Ross said he could not give a timeline for Trump's decision, though the president is facing a deadline of April 11 to act on the U.S. Department of Commerce's recommendations for steel imports and April 19 for aluminum.

The Commerce Department recommended to the White House earlier this month a series of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, suggesting a tariff of at least 7.7% on all aluminum exports from all countries and a global tariff of at least 24% on all steel imports from all countries or at least 53% on steel imports from certain nations. The department also proposed quotas on imports of the metals.

According to a separate report from CNBC, the U.S. Department of Defense backed the Commerce Department's assessment that foreign imports of the two metals were a threat to national security.