Greg Jenkins (202) 482-3809
Francis (202) 482-4883
of Commerce Don Evans Reacts to ITC injury vote in the Section 201
Steel Safeguard Proceedings
Washington , D.C. -
The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) today announced its
conclusion that a surge in imports of certain steel products has
harmed U.S. steel producers. The products affected by the ITC's
affirmative determination constitute approximately 74 percent of
U.S. steel imports.
"The ITC's injury finding
opens the next stage of the Section 201 process, which is a recommendation
from the ITC to the President on possible action to assist domestic
producers in adjusting to import competition," said Commerce Secretary
Don Evans. "We await the ITC's recommendation, and will be consulting
closely with all interested parties in the months ahead."
The Administration requested
an ITC investigation of steel imports on June 22, 2001. The ITC
is an independent agency charged with investigating the effect of
imports on the U.S. market. The ITC will now prepare a recommendation
as to what action the President should take in response to the import
surge. It will announce a recommendation on November 30, 2001. The
ITC will follow its announcement with a report on the results of
its proceedings that will be sent to the President on December 19,
2001, after which the President will have up to 75 days to decide
whether to adopt, modify, or decline the ITC recommendation.
The Section 201 proceedings
are part of the Administration's three-pronged initiative to respond
to the challenges facing the U.S. steel industry. The second prong
consists of negotiations with U.S. trading partners to seek the
near-term elimination of inefficient excess capacity in the steel
industry worldwide. The third and final prong involves negotiations
with our trading partners to develop rules that will govern steel
trade in the future and eliminate the market-distorting subsidies
that gave rise to the industry's current condition. Negotiations
aimed at advancing these two multilateral prongs were launched at
a conference in Paris last month and will be pursued vigorously
in coming months.
The Administration continues
to vigorously enforce U.S. trade remedy laws. There are now 135
antidumping and countervailing duty orders on steel products. In
addition, there are 68 antidumping and countervailing duty investigations
currently in progress.
Between now and the
issuance of the ITC report, an interagency group will gather facts
that may be relevant to the Administration's decision on what action,
if any, to take. The schedule for submitting comments and relevant
data will be available from the USTR website, www.ustr.gov.