NEW YORK, Feb. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- A coalition of U.S. nail manufacturers today asked to join a court action here in order to sustain new tariffs ordered last month on importers violating U.S. trade policy.
The American Steel Nail Coalition, whose members manufacture the vast majority of nails made in the United States, filed the request with the Court of International Trade. The court is considering an appeal by Oman Fasteners, based in a nation bordering Saudi Arabia that has become a major nail producer.
In March 2018, President Trump, acting to protect national security under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, imposed 25% tariffs on nearly all imports of steel coming into the United States. But that Proclamation excluded "derivative" steel products such as nails, which led to brazen circumvention and a flood of imports that continued to undermine the U.S. steel industry.
On Jan. 24, the President issued a new Proclamation that extended tariffs to several kinds of steel nails and other derivative products. Trump took the action, said the Proclamation, because "domestic steel producers' capacity utilization has not stabilized for an extended period of time at or above the 80 percent…necessary to remove the threatened impairment of the national security."
The Proclamation also noted that from June 2018 to May 2019, import volumes of nails and similar products increased 33% compared to the same period a year earlier.
The Oman surge was even greater. In its Motion to Intervene today, the American Steel Nail Coalition noted that the volume of nails from Oman Fasteners into the U.S. jumped 95% over the 12 months ending May 2019. The Oman nails alone, coming from a single producer, were thus "a huge driver of the overall 33% increase."
Cliff Mentrup, the CEO of Senco, the second-largest U.S. nail producer and a member of the Coalition, said today, "Senco is a proud U.S. manufacturer, based in Cincinnati and founded in a basement in 1935. We make our nails from American steel wire rod, and our business over the past two years has been severely hurt by the massive increases in imports from countries that are circumventing the Section 232 tariffs."
Metrup continued, "The recent Proclamation helps restore a healthy steel industry by providing relief to American downstream steel customers like Senco, which is critical to the long-term health of the steel industry and our economy."
In addition to Senco, members of the American Steel Nail Coalition include American Fasteners, of Jurupa Valley, Cal.; Legacy Fasteners, Poplar Bluff, Mo.; Mid Continent Steel & Wire, also of Poplar Bluff; Specialty Nail, Prairie Grove, Ark.; and Tree Island Wire USA, San Bernardino, Cal.
Elizabeth Heaton, [email protected], 202-445-9858
SOURCE The American Steel Nail Coalition