ARLINGTON, VA -- The Aluminum Association is reviewing the Commerce Department’s recently released Section 232 reports on the national security implications of imported aluminum. The association believes that any remedial actions taken by the president in connection with the Commerce Department’s report should embrace the following principles:
1.Specifically address Chinese overcapacity and its effects, while avoiding unintended consequences for U.S. production and jobs.
2.Not interfere with the current trading relationship between the United States and critical trading partner countries (including Canada, the European Union and others) that operate as market economies, support U.S. aluminum production and jobs, and are highly integrated with North American supply chains. Of particular note, the North American aluminum industry has a long-term, essential trading relationship with Canada, which supports U.S. jobs and industry growth. By statute, Canada is considered part of the nation’s defense industrial base.
3.Address the needs of the domestic aluminum value chain, including both primary and downstream U.S. production. Specifically, any action should ensure that producers and fabricators of intermediate aluminum products used in manufacturing finished products experience beneficial effects.
4.Adopt a monitoring system (similar to Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis System) for aluminum imports and particularly for imports from countries that pose a circumvention threat (Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, etc.).
“We look forward to working with the president on a final decision that helps support continued growth in the U.S. aluminum industry,” said Heidi Brock, President & CEO of the Aluminum Association. “Ultimately, we favor a negotiated, enforceable government-to-government agreement with China on overcapacity.”
The U.S. aluminum industry helps manufacturers produce sustainable and innovative products, including more fuel-efficient vehicles, recyclable packaging, greener buildings and modern electronics. The industry supports 161,000 direct jobs and more than 700,000 jobs when indirect and induced impacts are considered. Further, the industry creates $75 billion in direct economic impact and $186 billion in total impact, around 1 percent of U.S. GDP.
In 2017, the aluminum industry enjoyed its eighth straight year of continued domestic demand growth. However, our most recent estimates indicate that imported aluminum now satisfies roughly 33 percent of all demand – a record. Over the past 5 years, domestic imports of semi-fabricated aluminum have grown by around 53 percent. This uptick in imports is being driven in large part due to aluminum overcapacity in China. In that same five-year period, Chinese imports of semi-fabricated products increased more than 228 percent. According to the latest industry data, Chinese primary aluminum capacity grew by 9 percent in 2017 while capacity in the rest of the world declined by about 0.5 percent. Chinese primary aluminum capacity exceeded production by more than 9 million tons last year – which is five times all existing capacity in the United States.
About the Aluminum Association
The Aluminum Association represents aluminum production and jobs in the United States, ranging from primary production to value added products to recycling, as well as suppliers to the industry. The Association is the industry’s leading voice, providing global standards, business intelligence, sustainability research and industry expertise to member companies, policymakers and the general public. The aluminum industry helps manufacturers produce sustainable and innovative products, including more fuel-efficient vehicles, recyclable packaging, greener buildings and modern electronics. In the U.S., the aluminum industry creates $186 billion in economic activity. For more information visit http://www.aluminum.org, on Twitter @AluminumNews or at Facebook.com/AluminumAssociation.