Steel industry: AMSA loses bid for 120% safeguard duties

Steel industry: AMSA loses bid for 120% safeguard duties

by Gerhard Papenfus

During the course of June 2020, AMSA applied for import duty protection of 120% on certain long products. NEASA opposed the application. Many companies contributed towards costs in this regard and we express our sincere gratitude for that.

We have just been notified that the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) has decided to recommend that AMSA’s request in this regard must not be adhered to.

This development is the first victory in the battle against the multitude of duties that are wreaking havoc in the Steel Downstream. There are still:

  • pending duties on nine new tariff codes of coated products. NEASA has opposed this application; and
  • the safeguard duties on hot-rolled coil, which were unlawfully extended and subsequently challenged in the Pretoria High Court by Macsteel. The case is still pending.-

In respect of the latest victory, we wish to remind you that when the safeguard duties on hot-rolled coil were implemented, ITAC also made a recommendation that it is “not in the public interest” to introduce duties. However, only a few weeks later, mysteriously, the wording was changed to it being “in the public interest” and the duties were implemented. Up until now, no explanation for this change has been forthcoming, 

We can only hope that such a suspicious intervention will never repeat itself.