US specialty steel imports

The latest statistical data released by the Specialty Steel Industry of North America (SSINA) reflect that the Bush Administration’s import relief programme, which went into effect in March 2002, appears to be working for the stainless steel products covered by the programme.
SSINA Chairman Paul A. Kelly commented, “The so-called section 201 remedy has started to help the stainless industry. But the full benefits are yet to be realised. It is crucial that the relief programme continues for the three-year term as originally planned.â€? The program covers stainless steel bar, rod and wire. The data show that while imports decreased considerably for two of the three products, import penetration remains high. “Imports still control 43% of the US market for stainless steel bar and 57% for stainless steel rod,â€? explained Kelly. “I am confident that these numbers would be even higher had we not received relief. The programme must continue if we are to have any chance of increasing sales volume, recapturing market share, and returning to profitability.â€? Imports of total specialty steel – which includes stainless steel, electrical steel, and alloy tool steel – decreased 12% to 56,665 tons in January. These imports captured 26% of the US market, a 3% decline from January 2002.

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