Wednesday, June 20, 2018

News: Rotherham Council considers support to stop Trump's steel tariffs


Councillors in Rotherham are condemning the 25% tariffs imposed on steel imports to the US, a move that could affect South Yorkshire expansion plans by Liberty Steel.

US President Donald Trump made the tariff announcement in February and from the beginning of June, America imposed a 25% tax on steel and a 10% tax on aluminium from the EU, Mexico and Canada.

The EU is the UK steel sector's biggest market but nationally 250,000 tonnes of steel was exported to the US in 2017 which amounts to £360m of exports.

In March, John Healey, Wentworth and Dearne MP, whose constituency includes Liberty Speciality Steel's Aldwarke plant, wrote to Dr Liam Fox MP, Secretary of State for International Trade, setting out his concerns that a 25% tariff could halt Liberty Steel's expansion plans.

A motion is set to be put before the Council next week that notes with alarm the imposition of 25% tariffs which it believes will be harmful both to the US and global economies.


The motion, put forward by Cllr. Stuart Sansome, a retired steelworker and union branch secretary, asks for members to support a position where "the Council resolves that the protectionist policies of the current US administration be condemned, that the government be urged to make the strongest possible representations on behalf of the UK steel industry, and that the Community Union's "Stop Trump Tariffs" campaign be supported."

Exports to the US account for almost 12% of revenue for Liberty Speciality Steel in Rotherham and the introduction of a 25% tariff could mean the business would have to re-consider plans to increase exports to the US.

Liberty formally completed a £100m deal to acquire the Speciality Steels division of Tata Steel UK last year. It is undertaking a multi-million-pound investment by the Liberty House Group – a member of the GFG Alliance - that is creating 300 new jobs at Rotherham and its sister plant in Stocksbridge.

Roy Rickhuss, General Secretary of Community, the steelworkers' union, said: "Trade unions across the world must stand together in opposition to these measures. The problems of steel dumping will not be solved by unfair tariffs, and steelworkers in the UK and USA must not fall into the trap of believing rhetoric from the likes of Donald Trump."

Images: Liberty Speciality Steel


Anonymous,  June 20, 2018 at 1:10 PM  

Just a point,we wont be in EU,were leaving,so as president Trump as said previously ,he wants a trade deal with an.independent UK usual anti Trump anti Brexit,rubbish!😏

Anonymous,  June 22, 2018 at 10:16 AM  

Won't we be in a weaker position trying to do trade deals on our own? I can't imagine a country like China even bothering to have us in the room.

Tinyb.,  July 2, 2018 at 9:11 AM  

Trump is a con-man & only understands deals as a one way process, with winners and losers, a good deal is when you take advantage of someone else. He doesn't understand world trade, because he doesn't understand that a deal can be mutually beneficial to both sides, in his mind someone is always being shafted.
If he is eager to 'do a deal' with the UK, then it's not likely to be a good one for us (except, following brexit, any deal we'll be desperate for any deal we can get)

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