Federal Foreign Office: “Foreign Minister Gabriel presents the case for the German steel industry in dispute with the United States”

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Foreign Minister Gabriel writes to European Commissioner Malmström.

Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel today (24 March) wrote a letter to the European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström presenting the case that the Commission unequivocally call upon the US Administration in its current talks to respect WTO regulations in force.

In the United States, an anti-dumping investigation is currently underway in the steel sector affecting, inter alia, the German companies Salzgitter AG (Lower Saxony) and Dillinger Hütte (Saarland).

“There is reason to fear that the American rivals of these two companies are hoping that the new US Administration could be prepared to allow US companies to engage in unfair dumping even if this violates international law. We Europeans must not accept this,” Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel explained. At the same time, he called for the companies to be self-confident. “The Dilllinger Hütte and Salzgitter AG steelworkers produce high quality steel and have nothing to fear from fair competition. Politics has the job, if necessary, of confidently presenting the case for this fairness and to retain jobs and of fighting side by side with the steelworkers,” as Gabriel pointed out.

According to the two companies involved, the investigation led by the US Department of Commerce wrongly accuses European companies of dumping when they sell steel products in the United States. The EU and Germany are advocating that the US Administration apply WTO regulations when calculating anti-dumping duties. Calculation methods which run counter to WTO agreements could potentially lead to the companies paying higher duties and thus facing huge competitive disadvantages internationally. The Federal Government has thus presented the case at various levels of the US Administration that recognised, fair rules be applied in the investigation. The investigation due to be decided soon will be the first anti-dumping investigation in the steel sector concluded by the new US Administration.

“That is why I believe it to be extremely important to take a clear position now to prevent starting the transatlantic business dialogue with the new US Administration with a negative and unjustified decision,” as Federal Foreign Minister Gabriel wrote to Malmström.

Department of Commerce Finalizes Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigation Determinations Against Chinese Chemical Companies

Press Release
03/21/2017 06:29 PM EDT

Today, the Department of Commerce finalized determinations in an antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) investigation of chemical imports, including HEDP, from the People’s Republic of China.

“The United States will not stand for the flouting of our trade laws,” said Secretary Ross. “As laid out in the President’s Budget Blueprint, this administration will make fair and secure trade a priority by strengthening the International Trade Administration’s trade enforcement and compliance functions.  This is not the last that bad actors in global trade will hear from us – the games are over.”

The final dumping margin of 179.76 percent was determined for the non-selected respondents eligible for a separate rate. Commerce determined a final dumping margin of 184.01 percent based on adverse facts available for all other producers/exporters in China that are part of the China-wide entity. This was due to their failure to respond to Commerce’s requests for information from the Chinese chemical companies: Shandong Taihe Chemical Co., Ltd., and Nanjing University of Chemical Technology Changzhou Wujin Water Quality Stabilizer Factor and Nantong Uniphos Chemical Co., Ltd. (known collectively “WW Group.”)

Click HERE for a fact sheet on this final determination.

In 2015, Chinese imports of HEDP, which is a phosphonate used in industrial water treatment, industrial household cleaning products, and personal care products, were valued at an estimated $290.1 million.

AD and CVD laws provide U.S. businesses and workers with an internationally accepted mechanism to deter to practice of and seek relief from the effects of dumping or unfairly subsidizing imports into markets within the United States, ensuring that each nations’ businesses play on a level field.

The U.S. International Trade Commission is scheduled to make its final determinations around May 4, 2017.

OPEC daily basket price stood at $49.70 a barrel Thursday, 16 March 2017

OPEC - Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries
Vienna, Austria, 17 March 2017–The price of OPEC basket of thirteen crudes stood at $49.70 a barrel on Thursday, compared with $49.17 the previous day, according to OPEC Secretariat calculations. (View Archives)

The OPEC Reference Basket of Crudes (ORB) is made up of the following: Saharan Blend (Algeria), Girassol (Angola), Oriente (Ecuador), Rabi Light (Gabon), Iran Heavy (Islamic Republic of Iran), Basra Light (Iraq), Kuwait Export (Kuwait), Es Sider (Libya), Bonny Light (Nigeria), Qatar Marine (Qatar), Arab Light (Saudi Arabia), Murban (UAE) and Merey (Venezuela).

Source: OPEC


Karl William

Statement from the Department of Commerce on the President’s America First Budget Blueprint

Press Release
03/17/2017 11:23 AM EDT

The President’s America First Budget Blueprint begins the important task of streamlining government and making it more efficient.  It does this while protecting the Department of Commerce’s core missions and directing tax dollars to where the federal government can have the most impact for all Americans.

The Blueprint prioritizes and protects investments that put America first. 
To that end, it strengthens the International Trade Administration’s (ITA) trade enforcement and compliance functions, including the Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duty investigations, while rescaling the agency’s export promotion and trade analysis activities. It increases funding for the U.S. Census Bureau to continue preparations for the 2020 Decennial Census, and brings private-sector sensibility to our major capital expenditures.

Starting with the America First Budget Blueprint released today, the Administration will be able to fulfill the key priorities of maintaining our national security, spurring job growth, and creating opportunity for all Americans.  The Department looks forward to working with its partners across the government to further realize these goals.