5 reasons Ohioans should fear a trade war with Canada

For decades, the prospect of a trade war with Canada has been an idea about as likely as a unicorn invasion.

But tensions have flared between the historic allies, punctuated by a war of words over the weekend between President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

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Ohio has much to lose from a trade war between the U.S. and Canada, which could raise prices on everything from car parts to shaving cream.

Here are some Ohio products that could be impacted:

  1. Manufacturing: This is a big category, including Ohio-made automobiles — Hondas in Marysville, Chevy Cruzes in Lordstown, for example. About 38 percent of Ohio exports go to Canada.
  2. Stuff no homeowner could live without: Another big category. Ohio makes dishwashers, washers, dryers, refrigerators, freezers, you name it. The new tariffs Canada has proposed include all of the Ohio-made products listed above.
  3. Stuff you never knew was made in Ohio: Try luxury sailboats. If you can afford one now, the tariffs probably won't hurt you too much, but you may have to pay more.
  4. Sweet-tooth items: Strawberry jam, licorice products and maple sugar are on Canada's list for higher tariffs. Beer kegs too.
  5. Shaving cream: Dublin, Ohio-based Perio, Inc., says one in four men use Barbasol shaving cream. If that's true, one in four men may end up paying more for it.
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Canada’s tariffs are set to go into effect July 1, so there’s still time for the two countries to patch things up. But that seemed unlikely after Trump and Trudeau went at it over the weekend. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, may have summed up the prevailing mood in the state when he said about trade: “The real problem is China. It’s not Canada.”

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