Jul 01 2022
UK government June 29 announced extension of the nation's steel import safeguard controls for a further two years "in the national interest," despite possibly breaching World Trade Organization rules. Safeguards using quotas and tariffs (TRQs) have been extended on imports of products from 15 categories from July 1 until June 30, 2024, after which they can no longer be extended.
Extensions to five of these categories are controversial, following original recommendations from the UK's independent Trade Remedies Authority (TRA) to phase out these controls June 30: this may target products from certain developing nations and particularly China.
The five are: category 6 -- tin mill products; 7 -- non-alloy and other alloy quarto plates; 12 -- merchant bars and light sections; 16 -- non-alloy and other alloy wire rod and 17 -- angles, shapes, and sections of iron or non-alloy steel.
The 10 categories on which the safeguards extension had already been expected are: 1 -- non-alloy and other alloy hot-rolled sheet and strip; 2 -- non-alloy and other alloy cold-rolled sheet; 4 -- metallic coated sheet; 5 -- organic coated sheet; 13 -- rebar; 19 -- railway material; 20 -- gas pipe; 21 -- hollow section; 25 -- large welded tube and 26 -- other welded tube.
-- UK industry is partly dependent on imported steel. The domestic industry in the UK has been in historic decline raising concerns over the security of supply chains.
-- Policy makers fear excess global capacity may see cheap product flood the UK market.
--Europe remains a key partner for UK steel trade despite the UK leaving the EU.
-- Russia's war on Ukraine and sanctions have led to changes in trade flows.
-- US and UK moving closer on steel trade terms.
-- EU, US and Asian steel markets continued downward movements following the UK announcement.