It's Not Just China. The Steel Overcapacity Problem is Global.

Countries like China, Japan, India, Brazil, Korea, Turkey and those in the European Union have all used extensive government support to fuel export-oriented steel capacity for the past 20 years, resulting in a massive global steel overcapacity problem. And for too long, American workers have paid the price.

Imports from Japan could significantly undermine recent gains in America’s steel industry. We need Section 232 because:

Japan’s steel industry fuels the global glut of steel. Japan has one of the world’s largest steel industries and is a major contributor to global excess capacity. In 2020, Japanese crude steel production was 83.2 million metric tons, behind only China and India. In 2019, the last full year before the COVID-19 pandemic, Japan produced 99.3 million metric tons.

Japanese producers have significant unused capacity and are highly dependent on exports. Japan has long resisted adjusting its capacity to market demand, opting instead to export enormous volumes of production. According to the OECD, in 2019 Japan’s steelmaking capacity exceeded home market consumption by approximately 46 percent.

The U.S. government has repeatedly found that unfairly traded imports from Japan have caused injury to domestic producers and workers. Fueled by import surges from Japan, domestic U.S. steel producers have repeatedly been forced to bring trade cases against Japanese imports.

Left unchecked, Japanese import practices on steel will undermine the Administration’s climate objectives. The American steel industry is the cleanest and most energy-efficient of the leading steel industries in the world, and on a per-ton basis CO2 emissions by American steel producers are significantly lower than those in Japan.

The good news: Section 232 measures are working, supporting new investment, steel worker jobs and the economic health of communities across the country. These measures were implemented in 2018 and have strengthened American steel output, national security, and our domestic steel industry’s ability to support our nation’s critical infrastructure needs. Section 232 measures on steel are necessary as long as overcapacity continues to persist across the globe.

Learn More about Sec. 232