Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Mexico requests USMCA review of antidumping quotas on steel

The Economy Ministry (SE) requested a review of antidumping quotas on steel exports to the United States under the framework of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

The SE published the request for a review in the government’s official gazette (DOF) on Monday. The ministry asked a binational panel under the terms of the trade pact to assess the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC)’s antidumping quotas on U.S. imports of steel concrete reinforcing bars (rebar) from Mexico. 

Mexico’s Economy Ministry, headed by Raquel Buenrostro, requested the review after the U.S. Department of Commerce found that several Mexican exporting companies held dumping margins of between 2.3 and 16.28%. (Galo Cuñas/Cuartoscuro)

Mexico’s request concerns a DOC investigation carried out between 2020 and 2021 and published on June 9 that determined that a handful of companies — Deacero, Grupo Acerero, ArcelorMittal México, Grupo Simec and Sidertul — held dumping margins of between 2.3 and 16.28%. 

Investigations of this type are carried out when an importing country feels it is being negatively impacted by unfair practices, including dumping, which is when one country exports products at a far lower price than in the home market. 

In February, a group of 14 U.S. Senators urged the Biden administration to take action against a “surge” of Mexican steel imports, arguing that Mexico was violating a 2019 agreement in which both countries agreed to monitor the trade balance of steel and aluminum. United States steel companies argued that an influx in Mexican steel and aluminum was negatively impacting the domestic industry. They also called for measures to prevent unfairly subsidized (or dumped) prices. 

According to the SE’s publication in the DOF, the USMCA allows a country that is impacted by antidumping quotas to request that a binational panel review the imposed measures no later than 30 days after the filing of the first request for a panel review. 

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren
In February, 14 U.S. senators including Elizabeth Warren (seen here) penned a letter to Trade Representative Katherine Tai insisting that measures be taken to curb cheap imports of Mexican steel. (Photo 155755433 © Jhansen2 | Dreamstime.com)

The USMCA stipulates that “the panel review will be limited to the allegations of error of fact or law, including challenges to the jurisdiction of the investigating authority, that are set out in the Complaints filed in the panel review and to the procedural and substantive defenses raised in the panel review.” 

If the panel review finds non-conformities in steel exports to the U.S., both parties must seek a solution within 90 days of the panel’s conclusion.

With reports from Milenio and El Economista 

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