Steel and Aluminum Imports in the U.S.

Import tariffs imposed on certain steel and aluminium products from 23 March 2018

On 8 March 2018 the USA announced that, for national security reasons, it was introducing new import tariffs of 25% on certain steel products and of 10% on certain aluminium products. These tariffs apply to imports from all partner countries (including Switzerland), with the exception of those from Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Australia, Brazil and South Korea. However, steel and aluminium imports from Argentina are subject to quotas, as are steel imports from Brazil and South Korea.

Derivatives no longer subject to additional duty

On 24 January 2020 the USA announced that, for national security reasons, it would impose additional tariffs of 25% on certain derivative steel products and 10% on certain derivative aluminium products with effect from 8 February 2020. The US Court of International Trade declared these additional tariffs invalid on 5 April 2021.

Product-specific exemption requests

For certain steel and aluminium products it is possible to apply for exemptions from the tariffs described above. The US Department of Commerce is responsible for examining these requests. Forms and detailed information on this process can be found at https://www.commerce.gov/232.

The portal for requests for product exclusions is at Section 232 Exclusions. On this page you will also find a user guide and frequently asked questions about the exclusion procedure. Please refer also to additional information at Steel: Information on the Exclusion Process.

User Guide

FAQ

How should be proceeded?

General remarks:

  • Exclusion requests for specific products must be submitted by subsidiaries or official representatives in the USA or by US customers (“only individuals or organizations using steel in business activities (e.g. construction, manufacturing or supplying steel product to users) in the United States”).
  • Requests are examined from a national security perspective to determine whether a product is manufactured in the USA to a satisfactory quality and in a sufficient and reasonably available quantity.

Requests submitted on or after 13 June 2019:

Contact with the US authorities:

  • For questions about the exclusion process, please contact steel232@bis.doc.gov; tel. +(1) 202-482-5642 for questions about steel.
  • If you have any problems uploading the forms to the Section 232 Exclusions portal, please contact the Portal Support Help Desk on +(1) 202-482-3203 or 232ExclusionsPortal@bis.doc.gov.

Publication and entry into force of approved exclusions

  • Requests submitted on or after 13 June 2019: the status of requests can be checked directly on the website of the US Department of Commerce, at https://www.commerce.gov/232. For requests submitted up to 12 June 2019, please consult www.regulations.gov (reference number BIS-2018-0006 or BIS-2018-0002).
  • Exclusion requests are usually approved for one product only, and are restricted to the company or organisation that submitted the request. Consequently, exclusions do not apply to all customers or representations horizontally.
  • The US Department of Commerce generally decisions on exclusion requests within 90 days. If approved, exclusions enter into force five working days after the decision is published on www.regulations.gov. They are valid for one year in principle. Renewals must be requested using the procedure described above.
  • 'General approved exclusions' were introduced on 14 December 2020. They may be used by any importing body, but apply only if no complaints have previously been made about specific steel and aluminium articles.

List of steel and aluminium products subject to additonal US duty

Aluminium Import Monitoring and Analysis System

On 28 June 2021 the US Department of Commerce introduced an automatic import licensing system so that it can monitor import trends in the aluminium sector. Further information, including the list of products that are subject to the Aluminium Import Monitoring and Analysis System, can be found here:

Aluminium Import Monitoring and Analysis System: updates on aluminium import licensing

Product list: aluminium products HTS codes

WTO dispute settlement process – measures imposed by the USA on certain steel and aluminium products

On 9 July 2018, Switzerland launched WTO dispute settlement proceedings against import restrictions imposed by the USA on certain steel and aluminium products. Switzerland considers that these measures are contrary to WTO law. Since the consultations, which represent the first stage of WTO dispute settlement proceedings, were unable to find a mutually acceptable solution, Switzerland requested that a panel be established. The panel was convened on 4 December 2018 and proceedings are ongoing. Five further WTO dispute settlement proceedings against the same US measures are also still in progress. These were initiated by China, India, Norway, Russia and Turkey. In view of the complexity of this legal dispute and the delays caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, the panel now expects to submit its final report to the parties not earlier than the first half of 2022.

Specialist staff
Last modification 01.11.2022

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