Trump doubles metals tariffs on Turkey, sending lira into freefall

President Donald Trump abruptly announced Friday that he would double the rate of import tariffs on Turkish metals — forcing Turkey to ask citizens to buy its own crashing currency.

The Turkish economy was already mired in crisis amid worsening relations with Washington and worries over soaring inflation and unemployment.


Trump tweeted he had authorized a 20 percent duty on aluminum and 50 percent one on steel. "Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!" he noted.

The sudden announcement turned a run on the Turkish lira into a rout; it crashed more than 18 percent to a new record low against the dollar.

Donald J. Trump

I have just authorized a doubling of Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum with respect to Turkey as their currency, the Turkish Lira, slides rapidly downward against our very strong Dollar! Aluminum will now be 20% and Steel 50%. Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!