Mar 23, 2018

BusinessEurope: US duties, temporary exemption of the EU is a step forward

The U.S. Administration announced that the European Union would be temporarily exempted of the decision to impose 25 per cent additional duties on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium until 1 May.

Markus J. Beyrer, Director General of BusinessEurope, said: “This is good news for EU companies and it opens the door for further discussions with the USA. The EU fulfils all the relevant criteria that justify exemption, inter alia fighting overcapacity and cooperating in the global forum on steel, working on relevant WTO cases, using anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures and cooperating in the field of security. There is no objective reason why the EU should not be granted a permanent exemption from these measures. We appreciate the efforts of the Commission and the Member States in passing this message.”

While establishing a dialogue with the USA, the EU must remain vigilant and safeguard its interests and the interests of its companies. “For the moment there is no guarantee the EU will obtain a permanent exemption and what the related conditions will be. Therefore, the EU must preserve its interests and the interests of its industry in line with WTO rules. The legitimacy of the WTO needs to be fully maintained as guardian of the world trading system. We trust that the EU and the USA will continue to work as partners to promote free and fair trade,” he concluded.

Source: BusinessEurope

Mar 23, 2018

Confindustria: EU exemption from US measures on steel and aluminium is good

“This is certainly a very positive signal, which is a direction of the EU-US relations that Confindustria has always hoped for”, said the President of Confindustria, Vincenzo Boccia, following the confirmation by the White House of the Temporary exemption of the EU from duties Imposed by the United States on imports of steel and aluminium.

“It is an important recognition of not only the strong commercial, but also political and strategic, ties between the European and the US economies,” added Mr Boccia. “This is a significant step, whose merit must be attributed to the Government and the EU institutions. Moreover it is a demonstration of how important the unity of Europe is: such a result was possible only because the EU teamed up and spoke with one voice.”

“But the story is far from over: the EU must intervene quickly to protect the European steel and metallurgical sectors, which risk being affected by the US decision of imposing duties of 25 per cent and 10 per cent on imports of steel and aluminium from all over the world, which can only have disruptive consequences on the European market, where global production surpluses are likely to spill over. The EU Should soon introduce a safeguard measure covering all products potentially affected by US measures. In parallel, Confindustria will continue to do everything possible to avoid a dangerous protectionist escalation, which would risk damaging many sectors of Italian industry, arrest the dynamics of world trade and hinder the hard-won economic recovery,” concluded Mr Boccia.

Source: Confindustria

Mar 23, 2018

Ai Group: Whimsical US trade policy shifts deeply disturbing

Statement by Innes Willox, Chief Executive of Ai Group
“The downgrading of the previously unqualified exemption for Australia from the US tariffs on steel and aluminium to a ‘pause’ status is deeply disturbing,” Mr Willox said.

“The world trade environment and the US/Australia trade relationship is becoming increasingly volatile with each new development. This on-again, off-again and on-again stuff is no way to treat a serious trading partner.

“Australian business is increasingly concerned by the uncertainty and potential disruption created by these whimsical policy shifts. We want to invest and get on with the job. This approach taken by the US Administration does no one any good and in fact can only really do harm to long-standing arrangements and relationships,” Mr Willox said.

Source: AiG

Mar 10, 2018

Ai Group comment on Australian exemption from US steel and aluminium tariffs

“The exemption for Australia from the US steel and aluminium tariffs is a very positive step and a credit to the Federal Government’s diplomatic efforts,” said Ai Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox.

“While the exemption will be welcomed by industry here it no doubt only applies to steel and aluminium from Australia and not to Australian companies producing steel and aluminium in non-exempt countries.”

“Despite the exemption, the threat of Australia sustaining collateral damage in a trade war remains real.”

“Australia will be among the biggest losers from a US-inspired rise in global protectionism. As an export nation our economy is best served by a rules-based free and fair-trading environment,” Mr Willox said.

Source: AiG

Mar 09, 2018

BusinessEurope: US duties – EU should react appropriately

Unfortunately, US President Trump confirmed his decision to impose additional duties on aluminium and steel without an exemption for the EU. European business has strongly warned against creating far-reaching disruption in world trade. Commenting on the decision that will enter into force in 15 days, Markus J. Beyrer, Director General of BusinessEurope said: “In spite of sound arguments against, President Trump has decided to impose additional duties of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium. Regrettably the EU, a key strategic ally of the US has not been exempted from this decision. The decision will enter into force in 15 days and we should do the utmost during this time to exclude the EU on security grounds”.

If the EU is not exempted from the measures it will have to react appropriately.

“The EU must have a level-headed response, in line with WTO rules and safeguard the interests of its industry. BusinessEurope considers that the three-step approach, announced by the European Commission combining a lawsuit at the WTO, safeguarding measures to address a surge of imports and retaliation on a selected list of products fulfils these requirements,” said Markus J. Beyrer.

Source: BusinessEurope

Mar 08, 2018

CCC: Temporary exemption from U.S. tariffs should be permanent

While the Canadian Chamber welcomes the temporary exemption extended to Canada on U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs by the U.S. Administration, the waiver must be made permanent and not be linked to the outcome of the NAFTA negotiations.

“Canada should be exempt from these tariffs, fully and without condition. We are a partner of the United States in NATO and NORAD, and Canada’s steel and aluminum industries provide a critical source of supply for American businesses and for American defence needs. Far from being a problem for the U.S., we are their ally, their supplier and their customer,” said the Hon. Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “Holding any threat over Canada’s head does nothing to address the real issue of dumping.”

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce applauds the Government of Canada’s ongoing work to obtain a Canadian exemption, and we are grateful for the strong support provided by so many U.S. political and business leaders.

“It’s in everyone’s interest to reach a fair and workable agreement on NAFTA. Linking the steel and aluminum issue to the trade agreement negotiations will only serve as a distraction, making it more difficult to achieve our shared objective of a modernized NAFTA,” said Mr. Beatty.

The Canadian Chamber remains concerned that these new U.S. tariffs will result in diversion of steel and aluminum from affected countries into Canada. We encourage the Government of Canada to ensure that steel and aluminum are not dumped into Canada, and that the Canadian Border Security Agency is appropriately staffed, resourced and financed to deal with this issue.

Source: CCC
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