Source: Hellenic Shipping News
The proliferation of global steel trade litigation is creating both consternation and opportunities for those navigating the ever-changing landscape, according to executives speaking this week at a major rebar conference in Greece.
“You are hearing of a new antidumping case about every month,” Murat Cebecioglu, exports sales manager for Turkish longs producer Icdas, said during the 77th IREPAS meeting and SteelOrbis Fall Conference in Athens. “It keeps changing all the time.”
Liberty House Group’s Michael Setterdahl said the lingering specter of potential tariffs from the ongoing US Section 232 imports investigation has added uncertainty, further disrupting trade flows.
Shifting trade flows mean material is “staying closer to home” than in the recent past, he said. “This could have a dramatic effect on future trade flows and might have an impact on pricing,” Setterdahl said.
US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said last week no action would be taken regarding Section 232 — which could result in the introduction of tariffs, duties or other measures — until the Trump administration is able to move forward with tax reform.
“After tax reform might be after some people die of old age in this room,” Setterdahl jokingly told the conference attendees.
Cebecioglu said existing antidumping and countervailing duties add about $50/mt to the cost of material his company sells into the US. Still, he said even with such significant barriers to business, companies see the US as a desirable location to sell into and “people will try to find a way to get in… because it’s a big market.”
Rebar producers in Italy, Peru, Spain and Portugal have found recent success selling to the US, Cebecioglu said.
“Everybody is going to find a way to get a piece of this market,” he said.