The US Department of Commerce (Commerce) issued a preliminary determination in an anti- circumvention inquiry on certain corrosion-resistant steel products (CORE) or galvanized sheet, imported from five countries. 

 

Commerce has reviewed imports from Costa Rica, Guatemala, Malaysia, South Africa, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in actions to prevent the circumvention of US trade laws.

 

The department concluded that some manufacturers in Costa Rica, Malaysia, and the UAE obtained hot rolled coil (HRC) or cold rolled coil (CRC) sheet substrate from China, which is subject to US antidumping and countervailing duties, on HRC, CRC and CORE products at present.The determination also found that some producers in Malaysia sourced HRC or CRC sheet substrate from Taiwan, which is also subject to these orders. 

 

It is unclear whether Commerce has issued adverse preliminary determinations on Guatemala or South Africa, and if those determinations will be conveyed later. It is also unclear what proportion of CORE imports from Costa Rica, Malaysia, and the UAE were produced with substrate from China because supplementary information provided by the department is limited. 

 

Commerce will provide further information on prescribed rates, which will be effective retroactively from Aug 2019, once published in the Federal Register.

 

The department initiated anti-circumvention CORE inquiries on these five countries in Aug 2019, and in estimating the possible consequences, found the US imported around 110,000nt (99,790mt) of galvanized sheet from Costa Rica, Malaysia, and the UAE in 2019, a decrease from 180,000nt in 2018 and representing about 3pc of imports of these products and 0.5pc of apparent US galvanized sheet consumption.

 

The potential remaining supply side benefit of about 110,000nt over the next few years may be small considering about 1.5mn nt of additional domestic galvanized sheet capacity will become available by mid-2021. 

 

AK Steel has the most contact with galvanized sheets at about 50pc of flat rolled shipments, followed by Steel Dynamics at about 29pc of steel mill shipments and about 50pc of sheet mill shipments. US Steel has around 24pc of US flat rolled shipments, and Nucor is at about 10pc of steel mill shipments and about 20pc of sheet mill shipments, according to an analysis.

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