Foreign Trade Barriers severely damage international trade, AISI says


steel_industryThe currently existing foreign trade barriers distort international trade and are detrimental to the domestic steel industry in the US, according the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) in its comments submitted to the Trade Policy Staff Committee. The Committee led by the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) will consider these comments while preparing the annual National Trade Estimate (NTE) report.

Many countries including China and India have implemented various measures including export quotas, taxes and licensing requirements in order to protect domestic producers. Such trade barriers have adversely impacted US manufactures. Further it notes that many of these trade blockade mechanisms are in violation of the globally accepted WTO trade terms.

The global demand for steel scrap has spiraled over the past several years. The demand is forecast to escalate further on account of boosted steel production in countries such as India, China, Brazil and Turkey. However, restriction of scrap exports by several countries has resulted in severe scrap supply shortage and ballooning scrap prices.

The import barriers including tariff charges and customs regulations are being enacted in several countries to safeguard local manufacturers from increased import competition. The steel producers in such countries benefit immensely from these barriers, but at the cost of damaging global trade.

There are fears that the Chinese administration may impose additional policies and regulations to further tighten the exports of steel into the country by foreign producers. The dumping of heavily subsidized products into domestic markets may make it more difficult for US producers to compete, it notes.