In response to today’s announcement by the European Commission that it will review the safeguard measures on steel, in place since 2018, a coalition of downstream users of steel is urging the Commission not to extend the measures beyond their expiry date this June.
in CLEPA, 26-02-2021
While the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted manufacturing activity across all sectors in Europe during 2020, production levels are now increasing and are expected to continue to do so as the economy recovers during 2021.
As a consequence, and since the second half of 2020, companies are facing surging prices for steel products and long delivery times because of an insufficient domestic supply. Due to the safeguard measures currently in place, reduced competition from third countries means that import alternatives aimed at easing cost and lead-time pressures on European manufacturers have been limited.
The possibility of extending the safeguard measures beyond June 2021 adds to the uncertainty and adverse market conditions that steel users are currently facing.
It is in the interest of downstream users to rely on a strong and competitive EU domestic steel industry. Excessive protection will only result in an uncompetitive European steel industry, to the detriment of downstream users and final consumers. Therefore, the steel safeguard measures should expire on 30 June 2021 as foreseen.
The coalition of EU trade associations representing the interests of downstream users of steel consists of ACEA, APPLiA, CECE, CEMA, CEMEP, CLEPA, Orgalim, and WindEurope.