The European Union has removed Brazilian stainless steels and steel profiles from its proposal for adjustments to the existing safeguard measures on steel imports in the EU market, according to the European Commission (EC). The EC submitted its latest plan to the World Trade Organization (WTO) last week (see Kallanish 16 August).
“The investigation conducted since mid-May showed that the measures have worked well overall during the first year of implementation. The adjustments aim however to make them more effective in full compliance with WTO rules,” the EC says in a note.
According to the president of Instituto Aço Brasil, Marco Polo de Mello Lopes, the safeguard withdrawal of safeguards for Brazilian stainless steels and profiles makes it possible for both products to increase market presence. This is especially so in the case of stainless steel because of its higher added value.
The EC is looking to reduce the rate of progressive increase of the general safeguard quotas from 5% to 3% on the basis of more recent imports statistics. According to the adjustment plan, Brazil will maintain its specific quota for cold-rolled steel. This will continue to be 165,010 tonnes from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2020, while during the following one-year period it should be 169,961t. Volumes surpassing this quota will be taxed at 25%.
The proposed plan will be first discussed with all affected WTO members. Following these consultations, the adjustments will be submitted for approval to the EU members, so that they can become effective as of October 2019, the EC says.