Last week Trudeau was publicly critical of Trump's big announcement, saying, "The idea that we are somehow a national security threat to the United States is quite frankly insulting and unacceptable".

In retaliation for the Trump administration announcing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Mexico and much of the rest of the world, Mexico Tuesday imposed a series of tariffs against U.S. exports to its market valued at $3 billion.

U.S. President Donald Trump is not backing down from the tough line he has taken on trade, the White House's top economic adviser said on Wednesday, setting the stage for a showdown with top allies at this week's G7 summit in Canada. British forces burned down the White House and much of Washington, D.C., in August 1814 after Americans attacked York, Ontario, which was then a British colony.

The EU and Canada have also promised retaliatory tariffs.

The new tariffs imposed by Mexico on steel imports are significant for the USA, the biggest supplier to the country, providing over a third of all steel goods imported into Mexico, a net importer of steel products. The Trump administration at one point granted Canada and Mexico a last-minute reprieve from tariffs in March as negotiations to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement, known as NAFTA, continued.

The comments come after Mexico issued retaliatory tariffs Tuesday morning, on US steel and agricultural products. About 16 percent of all US exports go across the southern border, while about 80 percent of all Mexico exports are bought by the U.S.

"He's still deciding on what to do about Canada", said one senior administration official on the President's response to the request for leniency.

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He announced that Trump will hold bilateral talks with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emmanuel Macron.

Although the European Union hasn't pulled the trigger on its own tariffs - yet - it recently opened a case at the World Trade Organization, arguing Trump's tariffs can't be justified on national security grounds and are no more than "pure protectionism".

"His preference now, and he asked me to convey this, is to actually negotiate with Mexico and Canada separately", he told Fox News Tuesday.

Mexico is a huge importer of American pork. So why would the Trump administration be willing to start a trade war with the United States' most important trading partners - as well as some of its oldest allies?

For example, Mexico is the second-largest consumer of US pig meat, making the industry vulnerable to Mexican tariffs. Some further tariffs will come into force on July 5. "That Canada could be considered a national security threat to the United States is inconceivable".

Trade with the particularly important to Mexico because about 80% of its exports go to its northern neighbor whereas only around 16% of USA exports come to Mexico.

Critics of Trump's trade policies fret that the president is undermining the very system on which America and the global economy rely.