The US Economic Policy Institute (EPI) has recommended that the current US administration retain and continue with the steel import tariffs introduced in 2018 under Section 232.
The EPI stated in a report on Mar 24 that the tariffs helped curb US steel imports by 27pc in 2019 and created potentially 3,200 new domestic jobs.
Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 imposed tariffs of up to 25pc on imported steel from 2018 by the Trump administration which wanted to curb dependency on foreign products and increase in-house production capacity. The US domestic steel industry has been on a transformation path since 2019 with improved performance and potential capital investments worth $15.7bn in new or upgraded plants, according to EPI’s report.
The report reiterated that global steel capacity continues to supply excessively, leading to fears of the US importing inferior pollutive products even though domestic production is the most energy-efficient compared to the rest of the world.
Kevin Dempsey, president and chief executive officer of the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), has expressed his support for EPI’s report and stated on Mar 24, that the current tariffs are working in favor of the US steel industry.