Steel Wars

The Commerce Department steps in to protect domestic steelmakers

WHEN U.S. QUOTAS ON STEEL IMPORTS WERE LIFTED earlier this year, American . steelmakers, concerned that they might lose their customers to overseas suppliers, cried foul. Complaints, filed by Bethlehem, LTV and 10 other firms, charged nations including Brazil, Britain, France and South Korea with receiving unfair trade advantages from government subsidies. The American steelmakers argued that these benefits protect foreign firms from economic pressures that domestic steelmakers must face. Last week the Commerce Department agreed, citing 12 countries. A final ruling is expected next spring, which could mean permanent additional duties ranging from 1% to 91%.

The government's action should...

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