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  February 15th, 2018 | Written by

US Steel Users Warn Trump Against Section 232 Restrictions

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  • Steel users: Section 232 would undermine competitiveness of US manufacturers.
  • Section 232 action would result in lost business and jobs, say steel users.
  • “Everyone in the US steel supply chain will be damaged by restrictions on steel imports.”

A letter from 15 trade associations representing over 30,000 US steel-using manufacturers and employing one million American workers was sent to President Donald Trump and senior trade officials earlier this week.

The letter warns that placing Section 232 restrictions on basic steel imports will “adversely impact national security, the economy and the steel industry itself because it will undermine [United States steel using manufacturers’] competitiveness and our ability to make value-added products here.”  The letter continues, “In that event, these products will be made elsewhere, resulting in lost business and jobs for our members and reduced purchases from the domestic basic steel industry. Everyone in the US steel supply chain will be damaged by restrictions on steel imports. ”

The letter also points out that the one-million US jobs represented by these steel-using associations compares to 80,000 jobs in the domestic steel industry, and that domestic steel manufacturers are reporting their best earnings in more than a decade. The letter also points to the fact that there more than 160 antidumping and countervailing duties in place against 37 countries and 25 categories of basic steel products.

“The associations urge President Trump to avoid any decision which would do harm to so many downstream steel manufacturing companies and other steel consumers, our employees, and our customers, with little or no additional protection to the basic steel industry, while at the same time causing great economic harm to numerous other sectors of the US economy.”

Steel manufacturers, not surprisingly, have taken the  opposite approach, urging the president to protect their industry.

The signatories of the letter represent the American Gear Manufacturers Association, the American Wire Producers Association, the Can Manufacturers Institute, the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association, International, the Forging Industry Association, the Industrial Fasteners Institute, the National Precast Concrete Association, the National Tooling and Machining Association, the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers, the North American Die Casting Association, the Downstream Steel Manufacturers and Users, the Precision Machined Products Association, the Precision Metalforming Association, the Spring Manufacturers Institute, and the Tube and Pipe Association.