China`s steel

Industry associations are concerned about the growth of steel exports from China to world markets

Associations representing the interests of American steelmakers have supported the US President’s call for a threefold increase in the Section 301 tariff rate on steel imports from China and further investigation of the possibility of circumvention.

Kevin Dempsey, president of the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), said the organization is concerned about the recent significant increase in Chinese steel exports to global markets. AISI welcomes the US President’s actions to increase US tariffs and other measures aimed at addressing threats from China’s unfair trade practices.

«As the largest contributor to the global steel overcapacity problem, China continues to engage in widespread unfair trade practices that harm American steel producers,» Dempsey said.

He reminded that according to the OECD, China’s steel exports grew by 40% year-on-year – to 95 million tons in 2023. Dempsey explained that although the industry has not yet seen such a surge in direct steel shipments from China to the US, exports from China to third country markets are often processed into other steel products, which are then supplied to the US market.

Philip Bell, president of the Steel Manufacturers Association (SMA), noted that China and other non-market producers are trying to circumvent reasonable US trade rules by shipping steel through Mexico and other US trading partners. In his opinion, it is now necessary for Congress to approve the Playing Field 2.0 bill, which will support these goals of the administration and strengthen the US ability to combat China’s market-distorting trade practices.

At the same time, White House economic adviser Jared Bernstein said that a sharp increase in tariffs on Chinese steel products, which the Biden administration is considering, will not affect inflation in the United States and is necessary for national security, Reuters reports.

As GMK Center reported earlier, the US President insists on raising import duties on steel and aluminum from China under Section 301. The current average tariff on certain steel and aluminum products is 7.5%. Biden urged the US Trade Representative to consider tripling them.