Americans are ultimately going to pay the price if the Trump administration imposes broad tariffs on steel and aluminium imports, a former U.S. trade representative told CNBC.
Ron Kirk, who previously served as the United States Trade Representative and was a member of former U.S. President Barack Obama's Cabinet, explained that tariffs was just another term for taxes.
"American businesses and American families are going to pay the price for this," he told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Friday.
The tariffs would make foreign steel and aluminum relatively more expensive in the U.S. market.
"(Historically) when we start down this road, the ultimate losers are consumers and businesses that have to buy these products," he added. "We do know the unintended consequences will be job losses in other industries."
President Donald Trump, on Thursday, said that the United States will set a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports as early as next week. It will apply the tariffs broadly, without targeting specific countries, and will not impose quotas.