U.S. slaps tough tariffs on local steel tubes

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U.S. slaps tough tariffs on local steel tubes

The U.S. government on Tuesday slapped tariffs of up to 48 percent on Korean imports of a type of steel tube.

Korea was among six countries hit with the anti-dumping tariffs on cold-drawn mechanical tubing.

The other countries include China, Germany, India, Italy and Switzerland.

“Today’s decision allows U.S. producers of cold-drawn mechanical tubing to receive relief from the market-distorting effects of foreign producers dumping into the domestic market,” Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement. “We will continue to take action on behalf of U.S. industry to defend American business, workers and communities adversely impacted by unfair imports.”

The Korean companies hit with the 48 percent tariffs are Sang Shin Industrial and Yulchon. Other Korean companies received tariffs as low as 30.67 percent.

The anti-dumping tariffs announced on Tuesday were higher than the Commerce Department’s preliminary decisions on tariffs from November last year, which were 5.1 percent.

The U.S. government said it slapped the heavy tariffs on the two Korean companies because they failed to provide information requested by the Commerce Department.

In 2016, the United States imported $21.3 million of cold-drawn mechanical tubing from Korea.

The anti-dumping tariffs, however, are lower than companies from other countries face. Chinese manufacturers were hit with a maximum tariff of 186.89 percent and Germany faces 209.06 percent.

The decision comes as the Donald Trump administration has been ramping up its efforts to protect domestic industries, particularly the steel and aluminum industry.

Although Korea got off the hook for higher tariffs on steel and aluminum after agreeing to open up its market to U.S. cars, many doubt whether Korea is safe against further protectionist actions from the United States.


BY LEE HO-JEONG [lee.hojeong@joongang.co.kr]

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