EUROMETAL Steel Trade Day in Rotterdam highlighted the negative impact of trade protectionism on steel demand

Yuriy Rudyuk, Partner & Specialist in International Trade Law at Van Bael & Bellis

On last 09 October, EUROMETAL had invited to its 8th International Steel Trade Day having Paradigm Change in Global Steel Supply Chains as a main conference theme.

This major event, hosted by Port of Rotterdam Authority, noted a large success with professionals from the steel community attending the conference from all over Europe and Turkey.

The EUROMETAL International Steel Trade Day in Rotterdam started with a visit of the Broekman Logistics modern warehouse inside of the Port of Rotterdam. Visitors could assist to automated cranes unloading and warehousing at the company’s break bulk terminal.

In the evening a boat tour of the Port of Rotterdam was offered by the Port of Rotterdam Authority in the Catamaran Nieuwe Maze.

On  conference day, Fernando Espada, President of EUROMETAL opened the Steel Trade Day while an outstanding speakers list was introduced by Daniel Guinabert, EUROMETAL Director General, and included Danny Levenswaard, Director Breakbulk at Port of Rotterdam Authority that welcomed all participants to the EUROMETAL event in the World Port Center Rotterdam; Matt Watkins, consultant and principal analyst of CRU; Georges Kirps, former EUROMETAL Director General, Colin Richardson, editor at Argus Media; Hugo Du Mez, Advisor Business Intelligence – Dry Bulk at Port of Rotterdam; Remco Bol, Sales Manager at Broekman Logistics; Yuriy Rudyuk, Partner and International Trade Law specialist at Van Bael & Bellis; Ruslan Kharlamov, chief executive officer at SteelHedge and Tayfun Iseri, Director of business development and foreign subsidiaries.

Lorenzo Biagi, Sales and Marketing Director, Carbon processed flat rolled at Marcegaglia

The conference was concluded by an open forum animated by Daniel Guinabert. Besides speakers the panel was completed by the participation of Julian Verden, Managing Director at Stemcor Distribution and EUROMETAL Presidency member.

Speakers and panelists outlined some of the challenges,  threats and chances for Steel Trading in a changing world.

Here are some key quotes from speakers or panelists:

Trade protectionism is in progress on a worldwide level endangering economic growth in many parts of the globe with negative impact on steel demand.

The ever growing range of trade measures affecting steel means havoc for global steel supply chains.

At first glance, steel safeguards, recently  modified by EU Commission, seem to adequate present demand patterns of EU steel demand.

But on the other hand, the decided safeguard measures represent such an expanding administrative effort, almost impossible to tackle by small and medium sized market players.

Under this consideration, the latest steel safeguards modifications, represent a sensitive de facto restriction of import flows.

Finally it was underlined, that after expiry of this measures in mid-2021, there is a quite a probability that they may be re-conducted eventually for further years, be it with a smaller product scope.

In the view of US sector 232 measures prevailing in a longer perspective, speakers at the meeting concluded that EU steel safeguards are there to stay and will continue for years their impact on EU steel supply chains, even if latest

EU import statistics seem to indicate that a re-direction towards EU of former US steel imports presently remains  more an assumption than a reality.

We would like to thank again our gold sponsors Port of Rotterdam Authority and Broekman Logistics and our partner Baurom for hosting us and their confidence in our work and event.