ISTA disappointed at UK safeguard proposal review

ISTA, the International Steel Trade Association with headquarters in the UK, said it is “disappointed” at the latest review of safeguard measures published by the local UK authorities, Kallanish reports.

According to the association the decisions over the future of the measures “do not go far enough to allow the flexibility of supply and demand needed in today’s market in order to support UK consumer industries and economic recovery. In particular, the restrictions placed on reinforcing bars and structural hollow sections would actually hamper that recovery.”

According to ISTA the decision to maintain the 25% duty for imports beyond quotas is also wrong, because it just carries forward the level imposed three years ago without a further assessment of the current situation.

The association is set to press the UK authorities to include in the measures a “shipping clause” to protect those orders made at the beginning of the year that are planned to be delivered in Q3. “It can take five months to deliver an overseas contract to ensure a smooth supply to the UK customer; we (and our customers, and their customers) will be given less than one month’s notice of any applicable quota or safeguarding duty unless a shipping clause applies,” ISTA notice.

“Cost-efficient producers are enjoying record margins at the expense of the downstream industries and do not need this level of protection. However, as ISTA doubts that TRID will be prepared to drop restrictions completely, it proposes that quotas are significantly increased, especially where the quotas have been fixed at such a low level that they will simply not get used at all due to the risk of incurring the 25% penalty,” the association concluded.

After the formal proposal from UK authorities on safeguard measures, the market is now awaiting a decision from the European Commission on the same issue.

Emanuele Norsa Italy