US turns eye on Chinese investment in SE Asia steel projects - more competition to come?

The United States is looking carefully at steel projects in Southeast Asia in which China has invested, after US trade representative Katherine Tai said that she supported updating US trade laws to combat the circumvention of trade defenses, including subsidized Chinese investments in other countries’ steel projects.

This meant that Southeast Asia-origin steel may become subject to new trade defense measures in the US, regardless of whether they were produced from imported Chinese substrate, such as hot- or cold-rolled coil, or produced using domestic crude steel.
There are many China-invested projects in southeast Asia. Prominent among them are PT Dexin Steel in Indonesia and Alliance Steel in Malaysia, as well as other projects such as Eastern Steel in Malaysia.
Chinese entities have also bought over Southeast Asian steel businesses such as Singaporean steel fabricators Lee Metal, BRC Asia and Natsteel, as well as Amsteel’s Antara Steel Mills.

This was part of China’s push to export steel production capacity to neighboring countries amid its continuing drive to reduce domestic capacity, but it was also a way for Chinese steel mills to sidestep any anti-dumping...

Published

Jessica Zong

Paul Lim

Zihuan Pan

November 08, 2021

14:22 GMT

Singapore, Shanghai