The economy ministry said it will "initiate a dispute settlement process under the umbrella" of the WTO, and that its actions will "continue to follow the state of global commercial law and will be proportional to the damage that Mexico regrettably received".
The World Trade Organization received a complaint Tuesday from Mexico, a WTO official in Geneva said.
President Donald Trump announced last week that steel and aluminum tariffs would apply to Canada, Mexico and the European Union.
The peso sank to its weakest in more than a year earlier Tuesday on concern the USA may leave the North America Free Trade Agreement and try to negotiate two separate free trade deals with Mexico and Canada.
The latest negotiations came as President Donald Trump pushes China to assure the U.S.it will seek to reduce the $375 billion USA merchandise trade deficit with China by $200 billion.
The White House has said that it might move ahead with the imposition of tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods around the middle of this month if a broad agreement to slash the $375 billion trade deficit isn't reached.
Mexico announced steep duties on Tuesday on a raft of U.S. products ranging from whiskey to apples in retaliation for the "unilateral adoption" by Washington of steel and aluminum tariffs.
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The French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi was quick to push back - trolling Barr in an acerbic post that quickly went viral. But much of its progress would have been threatened if it looked the other way at Barr's tweet.
Malmström said that imbalances are about more than just trade and tariffs.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is rejecting calls to speed up the imposition of retaliatory tariffs on USA steel and aluminum.
Mexico has received backing in the dispute from its domestic business sector.
The group rejected "the protectionist measures of the United States government".
Ties between Washington and Mexico City have also been strained over immigration. But the Trump administration walked away.
The US is Mexico's largest trading partner, receiving about 80 per cent of the country's exports.