Trump administration: Steel imports threaten U.S. national security

17 February, 2018, 00:48 | Author: Barbara Daniel
  • Trump Administration Recommends Stiff Penalties on Steel and Aluminum Imports

"Now is the time for Presidential action to prevent excess steel capacity and surging steel imports from undermining our national security and the viability of the USA steel industry", the companies stated. He told those attending that quotas and tariffs are options on the table.

Already, there are reports that the European Union - one of the biggest exporters of steel to the United States - could retaliate with a tariff on United States agricultural goods.

The president ordered the investigations of steel and aluminum in April as he implemented get-tough trade policies that were a cornerstone of economic agenda. Trump take action based on the recommendations he receives, or he may opt not to take any action. Fiat Chrysler's USA shares were unchanged.

"As they dump steel, they pay tariffs - substantial tariffs - which means the U.S. would actually make a lot of money, and probably steel industry and aluminum industry would come back into our country. Other countries will retaliate, killing the very exports and American jobs this administration seeks to promote". No matter what he decides to impose, tariffs will be an incremental boost to companies like U.S. Steel, which has struggled with billions in losses over the past decade. US steel plants now operate at about 73 percent of capacity, while aluminum plants operate at just 48 percent capacity.

The United States imports large amounts of steel and aluminum from China and other countries.

Aluminum imports have risen to 90% of total demand for primary aluminum, up from 66% in 2012. China is by far the largest producer and exporter of steel, and the largest source of excess steel capacity. "It'll make a decision, and I will make a decision that reflects the best interests of the U.S., including the need to address overproduction in China and other countries".

"Aluminum used to make beer cans is not a national security threat".

The department notes that employment in the aluminum industry fell by 58 percent between 2013 and 2016, while employment in the steel industry dropped 35 percent in the last 20 years.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has scheduled a briefing with reporters today.

The options include a 7.7% duty on all aluminum products from all countries, extending through to semi-fabricated products and finished aluminum products but not to consumer goods; or a 23.5% tariff on all aluminum products from China, Hong Kong, Russia, Venezuela and Vietnam; or a quota on all products from all countries equal to a maximum of 86.7% of their 2017 exports to the US. All others would be subject to quotas equal to their 2017 exports to the United States.

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