Ease steel safeguard measures, Assofermet tells EU

Italian steel trade association Assofermet is asking the European Union (EU) to leave its steel safeguards system unchanged. Antidumping duties should also not be extended on the date of expiry, Assofermet adds. These are necessary measure to restore competition to a sufficient level within the EU market, the association claims

In a letter to European Commission president Ursula Von Der Leyen also sent to Kallanish, Assofermet says that, due to the spread of Covid-19, the European steel market is under pressure. “The increasing protectionism is weakening our industries. Forcing them to pay for more expensive steel is not the way to recover competitivity. An additional level of protectionism would only create an artificial steel price increase in the EU market, allowing EU steel producers not to follow the path of innovation and to sit on guaranteed profits… The recent request by EU steel producers to additionally tighten the steel safeguard system would be detrimental for the all the EU steel industry.”

“The wide system of protection measures in place (17 anti-dumping duties, anti-subsidy duties and also the safeguard system on imports from non-EU countries) represents something unprecedented in our economy and is a means for shifting profits to the steel producers at the expense of steel distributors and end-users. This is making the downstream businesses less competitive,” the association warns.