US President Donald Trump’s proposed metal import tariffs could seriously damage the domestic construction industry and jeopardise various infrastructure projects, according to a recent study.
Economic consulting group Trade Partnership warned that up to 28,000 jobs in the construction industry alone could be lost, if the proposed tariffs – 25% on imported steel and 10% on imported aluminium – are sanctioned by the US government.
The construction sector in the US accounts for 43% of all steel shipments, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute.
The study also found that the proposals would lead to a net loss of 146,000 US jobs, before taking into account any retaliatory tariffs from current trading partners.
“Steel and aluminum tariffs would reverberate throughout the US economy in ways that will, on balance, reduce US employment,” said the report.
It concluded that overall, five jobs will be cut for every one created by the tariffs.
Implementation of the across-the-board tariffs would also likely result in higher raw materials prices, which would reduce consumer spending power in the US.