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AISI outlines harmful trade practices against US steel

Keywords: Tags  American Iron and Steel Institute, AISI, trade issues, U.S. Trade Representative, fair trade, export barriers, Trade Policy Staff Committee, Samuel Frizell

NEW YORK — Foreign trade practices, such as export barriers, are harming U.S. steel players, the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) said in comments submitted this past week to the U.S. Trade Representative.

The document pointed to export barriers on raw materials in such countries as China and India that ensure a low-priced domestic supply of input material but hurt U.S. manufacturers and the global economy.

"(Export barriers) restrict U.S. steel producers’ access to raw materials and create an unlevel playing field in international competition by unfairly advantaging certain countries’ manufacturers," the AISI wrote.

Government subsidies and the advent of state-owned enterprises have hurt U.S. producers as well, the Washington-based trade group said, allowing producers to sell at below-market prices.

U.S. steelmakers must effectively compete with governments rather than private companies. Import barriers can also "distort trade by protecting a country’s domestic producers from import competition," the AISI said.

The AISI’s comments were in response to a request for comment by the Trade Policy Staff Committee in order to identify trade barriers to U.S. producers.

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