Many Americans see the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) as a contributing factor to the growth of the U.S. economy over the past 20 years and believe the focus of the NAFTA negotiations should be on modernizing the agreement, not withdrawing from it, according to a survey of 2,000 U.S. adults commissioned by Livingston International Inc. and conducted online by Harris Poll.
Though it is often portrayed as a bad deal for their country, data from the survey indicate Americans seem to have put the trade deal in context with the broader changes that have taken place in the economy and do not seem to single it out as a principal cause of economic adversity.
Like in the United States, steelmakers in the European Union are using their trade laws to fight back against steel imports that are unfairly subsidized by the governments in China and other countries. On Aug. 9, the European Union imposed provisional import duties of up to 28.5 percent on certain Chinese corrosion-resistant steels.
The World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement went into effect on February 22, 2017. The agreement seeks to reduce the “red tape” for traders involved in moving goods across borders.
The agreement, as summarized by the WTO, includes “improvements to the availability and publication of information about cross-border procedures and practices, improved appeal rights for traders, reduced fees and formalities connected with the import/export of goods, faster clearance procedures and enhanced conditions for freedom of transit for goods. The Agreement also contains measures for effective cooperation between customs and other authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues."
The United Kingdom surprised the world by voting for an exit from the European Union on Thursday. Steel Market Update asked John Anton, Principal Economist-Steel at IHS Global Insight to provide us his insights into what this might mean for the global market.
GDP growth in the EU27 is expected to lose 0.2 percent in 2016 and 0.8 percent in 2017 (revised down from +1.7 percent to +0.9 percent) following the UK’s exit. The impact on commodities is expected to be limited. According to Anton, global supply and demand will not see much impact. Prices will be affected very little since they fell so much in 2014 and 2015 that there is little room left before reaching the variable cost of production.
WASHINGTON – U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Stefan M. Selig today released the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Opportunities for the U.S. Consumer Goods Sector Report. The report details how the elimination of various tariffs and TPP’s other commitments to level the playing field will benefit American companies trying to compete in TPP markets. The consumer goods sector includes products such as jewelry, contact lenses, recreational vehicles, footwear, sporting equipment, and musical instruments.
The American Iron and Steel Institute, the Steel Manufacturers Association, the Canadian Steel Producers Association, CANACERO (the Mexican steel association), Alacero (the Latin American steel association), EUROFER (the European steel association,) Instituto AcoBrasil (the Brazil Steel Institute), the Specialty Steel Industry of North American and the Committee on Pipe and Tube Imports today released a joint statement regarding concerns about China’s attempt to gain market economy status in December 2016:
“The global steel industry is currently suffering from a crisis of overcapacity and the Chinese steel industry is the predominant global contributor to this problem.
The International Monetary Fund says the China’s currency is “no longer undervalued” after being labeled “modestly undervalued” for the past several years.
According to a Tuesday statement by IMF, "While undervaluation of the renminbi was a major factor causing the large imbalances in the past, our assessment now is that the substantial real effective appreciation over the past year has brought the exchange rate to a level that is no longer undervalued."
In its December monthly update, Eurofer says the European Union (EU) steel market will continue to strengthen in 2015. The press release from Eurofer follows:
The latest economic surveys show that following a weakening trend in Q3 most indicators stabilised lately. Geopolitical concerns appear to have ebbed away to some extent in recent months. EUROFER foresees for 2015 continued but slow growth, although the outlook remains vulnerable to downside risks such as an escalation of the conflict in the Ukraine, slow growth in the emerging world and persisting weakness in France and Italy.
In a joint statement, the directors of AIIS and EUROMETAL expressed concern regarding proposals by some World Trade Organization (WTO) members calling for provisional or conditional implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) pending a successful conclusion of the Doha Round trade talks.
The WTO is scheduled to meet June 24-26 to draft the protocol of amendment that will make the TFA part of the WTO Agreement. AIIS Executive Director Richard Chriss and EUROMETAL Director General Georges Kirps urge WTO member countries to reject provisional implementation and work to complete the amendment so that it can be adopted by the WTO General Council by July 31, 2014.
The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) commented on a report released earlier today by the Center for American Progress (CAP) regarding China's Economic Reform. The AISI stated that CAP's article indicates that economic reforms announced by Chinese leadership last fall will do nothing to mitigate China’s state-ownership and control over key industrial sectors, including steel.