Canada revises import quotas on Mexican steel

Canada has established surtax-free quotas for imports of energy tubular products and wire rods originating in Mexico, effective from February 2, according to an official from Canada’s Ministry of Finance.

Canada set an exclusive 200-day surtax-free quota of 72,820 tonnes for energy tubular products and 16,776 tonnes for wire rod originating in Mexico, according to the Canada Gazette, the official newspaper of the Government of Canada.

Imports above those levels would be subject to a surtax of 25%, the Finance official noted.

“The approach taken by the government is intended to maintain the broad objectives of the provisional safeguards of protecting the Canadian steel producers from a harmful surge in imports, while minimizing trade disruptions for Canadian businesses and trading partners,” the official said in an email to Fastmarkets on February 20.

The measures aim to ensure these imports do not fall below historical levels, and to allow for reasonable growth in light of recent import trends, the official added.

“The establishment of exclusive surtax-free quotas for imports of energy tubular products and wire rod originating in Mexico properly recognizes Canada and Mexico’s mutual rights and obligations under [North American Free Trade Agreement] and [World Trade Organization] rules,” the Gazette noted.

Canada initiated 25% safeguard duties last October, applying those tariffs to various sheet, plate, energy tubular goods, rebar, wire and wire rod goods. The country previously hit imports of a number of steel products from the United States with 25% tariffs, in response to the US Section 232 duties.

The Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) held a series of hearings last month on the question of whether to extend the steel safeguards, which are in the midst of a 200-day effective period that will expire in May.

The CITT is required to submit its report to the Minister of Finance by April 3.

Fastmarkets AMM’s latest assessment for US import welded high-collapse P110 casing stood at $1,250-$1,275 per ton cif Port of Houston on January 29, down from $1,270-$1,320 per ton a month earlier. That price average stood above $1,500 per ton as recently as July 2018.

Fastmarkets’ assessment for imported wire rod stood at $744-762 per ton cfr port of Houston on February 19; the price has maintained that level since late June 2018.

Yvonne Li


Yvonne Li

February 21, 2019

22:12 GMT