Steel Imports Continue Decline

At the midyear point, total and finished steel imports to the U.S. are 11,876,000 net tons (NT) and 9,506,000 NT, down 20.4% and 11.5%, respectively, compared to the same period last year, according to preliminary Census Bureau data and the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI). The U.S. imported a total of 1,710,000 NT of steel in June (down 10% from May), including 1,402,000 NT of finished steel (down 6.3% from June). AISI, an advocate of the controversial Section 201 steel tariffs, said the June data show the program is working to reduce unfairly "dumped" foreign steel on the U.S. market, but pointed out that imports are rising in several product categories due to country exemptions from the tariffs: "[Year to date], due to higher levels from some excluded countries, steel imports remain at or above the level of the year before in several Section 201 tariff categories. They include sheet and strip-all other metallic coated, hot-dipped galvanized sheet & strip, and hot rolled sheets, (up 17, 12 and 2%, respectively)," the trade association reported in a press release.

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