UPDATE 2-U.S. panel renews duties on flat steel from China and Japan, ends them for Brazil
(Adds comment from U.S. steelmakers group)
By David Lawder and Chris Gallagher
WASHINGTON, July 20 (Reuters) - The U.S. International Trade Commission on Wednesday voted to extend U.S. anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties on cold-rolled flat steel from China, India, Japan, South Korea and Britain for five more years but revoked such duties on the same products from Brazil.
The commission's decision in its five-year "sunset" review marks a significant victory for domestic steelmakers, locking in hefty duties that will keep Chinese-produced flat steel largely out of the U.S. market for the period.
Cold-rolled flat steel, used in automotive and appliance manufacturing, is among the highest-volume and most profitable products for domestic steelmakers, which were dramatically losing market share to foreign producers before the duties were imposed in 2016.
Additional "Section 232" national security tariffs of 25% were imposed by former President Donald Trump two years later, and the ITC's decision does not affect those.
According to the Commerce Department, weighted average anti-dumping duty rates on imports of cold rolled flat steel are currently 265.8% for China, 71.35% for Japan, 28.4% for South Korea, 25.2% for Britain and 7.6% for India.
The commission determined that removing the duties from all but Brazilian cold-rolled flat steel would "be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of material injury" to domestic producers within a "reasonable period of time," it said in a statement.
The ITC said removing the duties from Brazil would not likely result in such injury, reversing a finding https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/10/05/2021-21658/cold-rolled-steel-flat-products-from-brazil-china-india-japan-republic-of-korea-and-united-kingdom by the Commerce Department to keep 35.4% anti-dumping duties in place.
The American Iron and Steel Institute, a major steelmaker trade group, said it disagreed with the decision to end the Brazil steel duties but the panel "made the right call" in preserving the duties on Chinese, Japanese, South Korean, Indian and British cold-rolled flat steel.
"There is no reason to distinguish between the subject countries in these cases, as dumped and/or subsidized imports of cold-rolled steel from all of these countries will have an adverse impact on domestic steel producers," AISI President Kevin Dempsey said in a statement.
U.S. steel prices are normalizing after shortages induced by the COVID-19 pandemic recovery drove them to record levels last summer.
U.S. Midwest hot-rolled steel futures prices were quoted at $915 per metric ton on Wednesday, less than half their $1,944 peak in August 2021, but far above their $364 trough in December 2015 before the duties were imposed. Hot-rolled steel is further processed into cold-rolled steel. (Reporting by David Lawder and Chris Gallagher; Editing by Alistair Bell and Grant McCool)