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Us tariffs disrupt global steel trade

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Us tariffs disrupt global steel trade

May 24, 2019

 

 

The Wall Street journal reported on November 29 that U.S. tariffs are disrupting the global steel trade, with big steel exporters such as Turkey, Russia and Vietnam no longer exporting their steel products to the United States and instead flooding the European market, much to the frustration of European steelmakers. The steel export boom caused by the us steel tariff led to the surge of European steel imports, and the low price of eu steel further stimulated countries to increase their steel exports to Europe.

Roeland Baan, chief executive of Finnish steel maker otto kupp, one of the world’s largest producers of stainless steel, said the U.S. tariffs were the reason the global steel trade was already so out of balance and difficult to correct. Europe’s steel industry, just back on track after two or three years of painful struggle, could be in for an unprecedented crisis.

The phenomenon reflects the latest global ripple effect from the escalating trade war between China and the United States, the report said. The European Union is an important military and trade ally of the United States and is vulnerable to low-priced imports because of increased domestic demand, higher costs and lower trade barriers. Russian steel exports to Europe were up about 40 per cent year-on-year in the year to September. Vietnam’s exports to Europe increased by 144%. Turkish steel exports to Europe have risen 61 per cent and become the region’s biggest foreign supplier, largely because the Turkish currency has fallen 28 per cent against the dollar this year, making exports cheaper. Us steel imports fell 13 per cent year-on-year in the january-october period, according to Eurofer, while eu imports rose more than 10 per cent to a record high.

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