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Egyptian Steel seeks duties on Turkish rebar: chief exec

Keywords: Tags  Egyptian Steel Group, Ahmed Abou Hashima, Egypt, Turkey, rebar, U.S. Commerce Department, reinforcing bar, steel wire rod

NEW YORK — Egyptian Steel Group is seeking anti-dumping tariffs on Turkish rebar to help protect the fledgling local industry and is looking at the U.S. Commerce Department’s handling of its rebar trade case against Turkey with interest, according to its top executive.

Anti-dumping duties of 5 to 7 percent on Egyptian imports of Turkish rebar for four or five years could protect a budding Egyptian steel sector that has been hit with rising natural gas and water prices as well as higher wages following that country’s democratic revolution, chief executive officer Ahmed Abou Hashima told AMM in an exclusive interview July 21. The sector is disadvantaged compared with Turkish rebar producers, which established their industry in the late 1980s and have enjoyed substantial government support since 2007, he said.

"All we need is four or five years to protect our industry," Abou Hashima said, estimating that Turkish rebar exports enjoy a $50-per-ton subsidy. "After that, we can compete very fairly with Turkish and Chinese competitors."

Abou Hashima has requested that Egypt’s new government investigate potential anti-dumping duties on Turkish rebar, but expects that actual policy decisions could take several months to unfold.

The U.S. trade case against Turkish rebar (, April 21) has been watched closely, Abou Hashima said, and Commerce’s recent rebar decisions were "fair" and "aggressive."

Turkey received lower anti-dumping duties on rebar exports than initially expected in the preliminary decision, while Mexican producers suffered substantial duties. Mexican duties could edge lower in the final determination—due in several weeks—while Turkish duties could be higher, according to market sources.

Egyptian Steel, the country’s fourth-largest steelmaker, produces rebar, billet and wire rod. The Cairo-based company expects combined production to reach 3.4 million tons by 2016, which would make it Egypt’s second-largest steelmaker.

The company does not yet plan to export Egyptian wire rod to the United States, although some Egyptian wire rod reportedly has already been bought by a U.S. trader (, June 6). Ezz Steel Co. SAE, Egypt’s top steelmaker, has sold wire rod to the United States, according to one source.

Egyptian Steel plans to import 1.5 million tons of U.S. scrap annually over the next several years after its four steel mills become fully operational in 2015, Abou Hashima said. That will be the most important trade relationship between Egyptian Steel and the United States for the foreseeable future, he said.

Egyptian Steel is unlikely to hold an initial public offering before 2017, Abou Hashima said, partly because it first plans to ramp up production. The company would like to obtain a 25-percent market share of Egypt’s steel market, up from 10 percent, he said.

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