EUROFER Welcomes Extension of EU Steel Safeguards
European Steel Association EUROFER said that the extension of the EU steel safeguard for another three years will ensure there is a modicum of certainty for EU steel producers, provide ample access to third-country supplies of steel for users, and help ward off disruptive post-COVID surges of steel imports. EUROFER Director General Mr Axel Eggert said “We welcome that the EU steel safeguard regime has been extended. The conditions that required the launch of the safeguard initially are still very much present, including global steel overcapacity and US Section 232”.
Mr Eggert added “This extension provides ample opportunity for users to source material they might require from abroad, as the tariff-free quota level is now at least 15% higher than the record import levels on which the safeguard’s tariff rate quota is set the years 2015-2017. This measure mainly provides a safety net in the event that a sharp surge in imports occurs”.
He said “The EU steel safeguard is not a measure to stabilise prices on the domestic market, and it does not restrict normal supply to the market. European downstream users of steel can still access all the third-country steel they need based on traditional trade flows. Over the past three years, the size of the unused quota has grown and there is plenty of space in the tariff-free quota for users to satisfy their material needs.”
Mr Eggert also said “The current state of demand-supply disruption in the global steel industry and in many other sectors follows in the wake of the COVID crisis. However, it has nothing to do with the safeguard. Instead, the recovery of steel demand and the wider economic rebound has inspired a rush for material after the countercyclical destocking seen during the downturn”.