The International Trade Commission (ITC) has voted to continue import penalties against all nine countries in the cases brought by US domestic OCTG producers – India, Korea, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine and Vietnam.
John Foster Chairman American Institute for International Steel (AIIS) said:
“Imports have always played an important role in supplying drilling companies with OCTG and have played an important role in increasing production of energy and reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil. We are concerned that in using the trade laws to disrupt a number of legitimate, responsible and long term supply relationships, the ITC has allowed domestic industry OCTG producers to misuse the trade laws again. While most expect the facts should result in a no-injury determination at the final phase of the investigation at the ITC, this decision today will disrupt needed trade channels for over a year. Today’s decision again shows that the US’s trade laws are out of step with WTO obligations and are economically detrimental to American industry and the important jobs it creates."
AIIS decries the filing of trade cases by this profitable industry as ‘overkill.’ While AIIS, acknowledges that some overly aggressive suppliers had created an inventory overhang in the US market, the domestic OCTG industry is profitable, investing and growing its capacity in response to increased oil and gas drilling in the US.
David Phelps, president AIIS said “With this vote, the International Trade Commission commissioners ignored these simple facts and granted trade protection to domestic steel producers for at least a year, pending the outcome of the final decision on injury at the ITC next year. Put simply, this decision by the ITC can be expected to disrupt longstanding supply relationships and reflects an abusive use of the trade laws. With a profitable and growing industry in the US, along with growing demand for OCTG from all sources, domestic and imported, this is not an industry that needs trade protection.”