NEW YORK U.S. steel wire
producers have asked the Commerce Department to include more
productssteel wire strand, rope and cable, welded steel
wire grill, netting and fencing, steel springs and steel wire
garment hangersin the Steel Import Monitoring and
Analysis (SIMA) system.
"We respectfully urge the
department to extend coverage of this invaluable program," the
American Wire Producers Association (AWPA) said in a letter to
Commerce. "Orders on unfairly traded or subsidized steel wire
products (underscore) the importance of obtaining timely and
accurate information about current and future
Commerce announced in November
that it would review comments on extending the SIMA system. The
system will be in place until March 21, but Commerce has
proposed extending it until at least 2017.
The AWPA said that import data
on unfairly traded products can help U.S. industries uncover
duty evasions. Several productsincluding steel wire nails
from China and the United Arab Emirates, threaded steel rod
from China and steel grating from Chinahave been hit with
countervailing or anti-dumping duties by the U.S. International
Trade Commission but are not monitored by SIMA.
The AWPA argued that advance
notice of more imported steel products would help U.S. Customs
and Border Protection enforce duties on imports that might
otherwise circumvent duty payments.
Several other industry leaders
expressed support for the current system, lauding it for
supplying monthly import data on dozens of steel products.
"The SIMA (system) provides
transparency for all interested parties, including the
industry, government, importers and steel consumers," said a
joint letter from eight organizations, including the American
Iron and Steel Institute, the Steel Manufacturers Association
(SMA) and the United Steelworkers union. "It is especially
critical in this period of a slowdown in global economic
Charlotte, N.C.-based steelmaker
Nucor Corp. said in a letter to Commerce that it uses the SIMA
system extensively for business planning and as an early
warning system for import surges.
The SIMA system "can cause
domestic producers to look at their own strategy risk," SMA
president Thomas Danjczek told AMM. "It makes them
look at their own revenue strategy."
Danjczek added, however, that
while the SIMA system could help curb unfair trade practices,
it is not a cure-all. "This could almost be viewed as an engine
warning light," he said. "It gives you a little bit of an early
warning but doesnt have teeth with it to stop it.
Its only information. But information can be
The AWPA could not be reached