From the Steel Task Force Director:
The CITAC Steel Task Force is a coalition of companies and organizations representing the concerns of steel consumers, ports, and related industries on trade policy matters in Washington, D.C. It was formed in 2002 to seek removal of the Section 201 tariffs on imported steel, which was accomplished in December 2003.
Steel consumers realized during the Section 201 tariff battle that they had been absent from the political process, and that a major effort was needed to educate policymakers about the negative impacts of some trade policy decisions on steel consumers. Despite the early termination of the Section 201 tariffs, steel consumers continue to need an adequate supply of globally priced raw materials. Interruptions in steel imports, coupled with a weaker dollar and subsequent increased demand for steel around the world, have resulted in higher U. S. prices than elsewhere in the world for many kinds of steel, shortages and allocations, and increasing quality problems for steel consumers.
Steel consumers must have a voice in Washington if they are to have any hope of avoiding future adverse steel policy decisions. The CITAC Steel Task Force is that voiceworking to ensure that the concerns of steel consumers are known.
Recent activities of the CITAC Steel Task Force include:
Creating and implementing a strategy to maximize congressional understanding of and support for steel consumers during two International Trade Commission Sunset Review hearings on hot-rolled carbon steel and stainless steel sheet, conducted in March and April of 2005. The strategy included:
- Developing and working with Representative Knollenberg (R-MI) on H. Res. 84 that urges the ITC to take into account the impact on steel consumers and the overall economy when determining whether to continue or revoke existing dumping orders;
- Implementing a coordinated lobbying effort that resulted in more than 40 cosponsors of H. Res. 84; and
- Encouraging a significant number of Members of Congress to appear before or submit written statements to the ITC in support of consumers at each of the hearings.
Providing steel consumer input to the congressionally-mandated U.S. Department of Commerce study on the future demand for steel in the U.S, due to be finalized by June 30, 2005.
Supporting efforts by the House Energy and Commerce Committee to conduct a hearing on the steel market in the U.S.
Conducting a congressional staff event on steel consumer issues with more than 20 offices participating.
Providing testimony before the House Small Business Committee to recommend ways that U. S. trade laws could be made to work for steel consumers.
Planned activities for the remainder of 2005 and 2006 will focus on continued advocacy efforts to attain recognition for steel consumers as equal participants in trade policy debates and trade remedy proceedings.
Make sure your voice is heard in the debate on trade policy affecting steel consumers by joining the CITAC Steel Task Force today. Continued success requires time and resources and your contribution and participation will help ensure our future success. Please contact me if have any questions or need further information.
CITAC Steel Task Force