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Vietnam Today

Vietnam warns US over eventual cut to steel imports

Released at: 09:17, 01/03/2018

Vietnam warns US over eventual cut to steel imports

Photo from dungluoi.com

US warned of harm to trade development between the two countries from curbs on steel imports.

by Quang Huy

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has requested the US to “carefully” consider alternative means of restricting the importation of steel and aluminum products from Vietnam without harming trade development between the two countries.

The proposal was made after the US Department of Commerce (DoC) recommended President Donald Trump impose steep curbs on steel and aluminum imports from certain countries, including Vietnam, after the President authorized probes under a 1962 trade law that has not been invoked since 2001.

DoC recommended a steel tariff of at least 53 per cent be imposed on all steel imports from 12 countries: Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Egypt, India, Malaysia, Russia, South Korea, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam. The country-specific aluminum tariff option would impose a 23.6 per cent tariff on all products from China, Hong Kong, Russia, Venezuela and Vietnam.

President Trump has until April 11 to announce a decision on steel import curbs and by April 20 to decide on aluminum restrictions.

Talking about the move, the Trade Remedies Authority of Vietnam said it will closely follow the case and coordinate with the Vietnam Steel Association (VSA) and relevant companies and agencies to address the issue.

MoIT said it would follow the progress of the case and would consider all solutions to guarantee the legitimate rights and interests of Vietnamese businesses.

DoC slapped steep import duties on steel products from Vietnam that originated in China last December after finding they evaded US anti-dumping and anti-subsidy orders.

It said it would apply the same Chinese anti-dumping and anti-subsidy rates on corrosion-resistant and cold-rolled steel from Vietnam that starts out as Chinese-made hot-rolled steel.

Vietnamese-shipped cold-rolled steel will face combined preliminary US anti-subsidy and anti-dumping duties of 531 per cent, while corrosion-resistant steel will face combined duties of 238 per cent; more than enough to shut both products out of the US market.

According to VSA figures, Vietnam’s steel sector exported more than 5.5 million tons of steel worth $3.64 billion in 2017, an increase of 28.5 per cent in volume and 45.4 per cent in value compared to 2016. It exported 380,000 tons of steel worth $303 million to the US.

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