Wall Street Journal

Biden’s Foolish Snub of Nippon Steel

The US should be working with Japan to counter Chinese military and economic threats.

Will Chou
Will Chou
Japan Chair Fellow
A view of US Steel's Great Lakes Steel Plant during a tour stop with community members and experts supporting a cleaner and more sustainable future for steel and automaking industries on September 12, 2023 in River Rouge, Michigan. (Photo by Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images for Industrious Labs)
A view of United States Steel's Great Lakes Steel Plant on September 12, 2023, in River Rouge, Michigan. (Aaron J. Thornton via Getty Images)

Nippon Steel’s proposed $15 billion acquisition of U.S. Steel “appears to deserve serious scrutiny,” the White House said Thursday. The statement came after an outcry from protectionist lawmakers, including Sen. John Fetterman (D., Pa.), who have cited union and national-security concerns and vowed to block the sale. The anti-Japanese business rhetoric is reminiscent of the 1980s, when U.S.-Japan trade tensions threatened to undermine a critically important bilateral alliance during the Cold War.

U.S. politicians’ unjustified criticisms of the deal could strain relations between the U.S. and Japan and weaken their collaboration on trade and economic security. The White House should work with allies on economic and military cooperation, not criticize them.

Read the full article in the Wall Street Journal.