Association News

Biden Calls for Increased Tariffs on Chinese Imports

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President Joe Biden called on the U.S. Trade Representative to consider tripling the existing Section 301 tariff on Chinese steel and aluminum products. The current level is 7.5 percent.

The move was applauded by the leaders of the American Iron and Steel Institute and the Aluminum Association.

“AISI is very concerned about the recent significant increase in Chinese steel exports to world markets and welcomes President Biden’s actions to strengthen U.S. tariffs on steel from China and to take other actions to address the threats from China’s unfair trade practices,” said Kevin Dempsey, president of AISI.

Dempsey said that as the largest contributor to the global steel overcapacity problem China continues to engage in widespread unfair trade practices that harm American steel producers.  “According to the OECD, Chinese steel exports grew from 68 million metric tons in 2022 to 95 million metric tons in 2023, a 40 percent increase in just one year. While we have not yet seen a similar surge in direct Chinese steel shipments to the United States, Chinese steel exports to third country markets often are further processed into other steel or downstream manufactured products that are then exported to the U.S. market,” he said.

 “[This] decision is a win for the U.S. aluminum industry and the nearly 700,000 American workers the sector supports,” said Charles Johnson, president and CEO of the Aluminum Association. “Unfortunately, China continues to engage in significant unfair trade activities, including massive state subsidies which hurt U.S. manufacturing and global carbon reduction efforts. This targeted tariff action by the Biden administration will help to counteract some of these challenges.”
 
Johnson said the association will work closely with the USTR as it implements the White House directive.