23 February 2024
by Sarah Morgan

Protection for UK steel advised

The UK Trade Remedies Authority (TRA) recommends extending UK steel's safeguarding measure for another two years.

© Photo by Christophe Dion on Unsplash

Its extension review finds imports would likely increase if the safeguard measure were to expire, damaging the UK's steel industry.

These conclusions are based on the data provided to the TRA. Five UK producers engaged with the TRA during its investigation.

The UK’s steel safeguard measure protects the country’s steel industry from surges in imports.

The TRA states a failure to extend this measure leaves the UK steel industry vulnerable as both the US and EU are retaining their protections.

Furthermore, they state this would see cheap steel imports diverted from the US and EU markets to the UK market, undercutting UK domestic steel production.

The current measure, which covers 15 categories of steel, is due to expire on 30 June 2024.

Without the renewal, under World Trade Organization rules, another safeguard measure for these product categories of steel could not be put in place for another eight years.

Affected parties have until 7 March 2024 to respond to the findings set out in the TRA’s Statement of Intended Final Determination (SIFD).

The TRA will then submit its final recommendation to the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, who will decide based on the TRA’s analysis.

TRA Chief Executive Oliver Griffiths says, ‘Our interim findings are that the steel safeguard measure should be extended for a final two years to June 2026, after which point they would fall away. This would cover all steel categories currently covered.’

The Community union strongly called for the extension of the safeguarding measure.

Assistant General Secretary of Community Union, the steelworkers Union, Alasdair McDiarmid says, ‘Community Union welcomes today’s report by the TRA. It is vital for our steel industry that its recommendation for an extension of the safeguarding measures be adopted by the UK Government for another two years at least. Unions and business are united on this call for action from the Government.’