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Brexit Law Blog: Archive

This blog tracked legal issues arising from Brexit. It ran from the referendum in 2016 to the last post in May of 2021.

DIT update on steel safeguard measures

Posted on 06 Oct 2020 by Brick Court

Fergus Randolph QC and Sarah Lee QC

On 30 September 2020, the Department for International Trade [“DIT”] published an update to its guidance on the UK’s trade remedies Brexit transition policy, concerning steel safeguard measures. 

As noted in the guidance, the UK has committed to maintaining EU safeguard measures after the end of the transition period, where there is a UK interest in doing so.  It will be recalled that safeguard measures temporarily restrict imports of specified goods to help relevant domestic industries adapt to new or temporary market conditions.  Safeguard measures may be applied where there has been an unforeseen surge in imports which has caused or is causing serious injury to the relevant domestic industry.

The Trade Remedies Investigations Directorate [“TRID”] conducted a transition review in relation to various EU steel safeguard measures to determine whether it would be appropriate to retain them after the end of the transition period.  It identified 19 product categories covered by the EU’s existing measures where UK production existed.  It therefore determined that the measures in question should “be transitioned in order to provide continuity to UK producers.”  The remaining 7 product categories covered by the EU’s existing measures did not have a requisite UK interest because there was no UK production of the products and accordingly tariff rate quotas [“TRQs”] on those products will cease as of 23:00 (London time) 31 December 2020.  A table with the different product categories and their treatment is set out below.

Product category numberSteel Product Categories subject to EU Safeguard MeasuresSubject to UK Safeguard Measures?
1Non-Alloy and Other Alloy Hot Rolled Sheets and StripsMaintain
2Non-Alloy and Other Alloy Cold Rolled SheetsMaintain
3AElectrical Sheets (other than GOES)Terminate
3BElectrical Sheets (other than GOES)Terminate
4AMetallic Coated SheetsMaintain
4BMetallic Coated SheetsMaintain
5Organic Coated SheetsMaintain
6Tin Mill productsMaintain
7Non-Alloy and Other Alloy Quarto PlatesMaintain
8Stainless Hot Rolled Sheets and StripsTerminate
9Stainless Cold Rolled Sheets and StripsTerminate
10Stainless Hot Rolled Quarto PlatesTerminate
12Non-Alloy and Other Alloy Merchant Bars and Light SectionsMaintain
14Stainless Bars and Light SectionsMaintain
15Stainless Wire RodMaintain
16Non-Alloy and Other Alloy Wire RodMaintain
17Angles, Shapes and Sections of Iron or Non Alloy SteelMaintain
18Sheet PilingTerminate
19Railway MaterialMaintain
20Gas pipesMaintain
21Hollow sectionsMaintain
22Seamless Stainless Tubes and PipesTerminate
24Other Seamless TubesTerminate
25ALarge welded tubesMaintain
25BLarge welded tubesMaintain
26Other Welded PipesMaintain
27Non-Alloy and other alloy cold finished barsMaintain
28Non-Alloy WireMaintain

Insofar as concerns the 19 product categories for which the safeguard measures are to be retained, the DIT collected historic trade flow data between the period 2015-2017 in order to be able to re-calculate the relevant TRQs.  Those recalculated TRQs are set out below:

Quarterly Volume of Country and Residual Tariff-Rate Quotas

Product Category Number Product Category Area/Country Year 3
From: 1/1/2021 To: 31/3/2021 (tonnes) From: 1/4/2021 To: 30/6/2021 (tonnes)
1 Non Alloy and Other Alloy Hot Rolled Sheets and Strips EU 147,130 148,765
Turkey 23,602 23,864
Other Countries 46,033 46,544
2 Non Alloy and Other Alloy Cold Rolled Sheets EU 69,037 69,804
South Korea 9,392 9,496
India 7,052 7,131
Other Countries 25,994 26,283
4A Metallic Coated Sheets EU 153,111 154,812
South Korea 11,475 11,603
Other Countries 58,957 59,612
4B Metallic Coated Sheets EU 166,037 167,882
China 30,355 30,693
South Korea 13,761 13,914
Other Countries 32,261 32,620
5 Organic Coated Sheets EU 31,093 31,439
Other Countries 1,063 1,075
6 Tin Mill products EU 32,390 32,750
China 3,842 3,885
Other Countries 4,219 4,266
7 Non Alloy and Other Alloy Quarto Plates EU 60,522 61,195
Ukraine 7,810 7,896
Other Countries 15,527 15,700
12 Non Alloy and Other Alloy Merchant Bars and Light EU 48,392 48,930
Turkey 11,278 11,403
Other Countries 8,237 8,329
13 Rebars EU 42,268 42,737
Turkey 16,297 16,478
Ukraine 11,274 11,399
Belarus 8,249 8,341
Other Countries 38,147 38,571
14 Stainless Bars and Light Sections EU 11,675 11,805
Other Countries 2,444 2,471
15 Stainless Wire Rod EU 233 235
Taiwan 59 60
USA 35 35
South Korea 26 27
Other Countries 18 18
16 Non Alloy and Other Alloy Wire Rod EU 63,925 64,635
Other Countries 4,060 4,105
17 Angles, Shapes and Sections of Iron or Non Alloy Steel EU 142,599 144,183
Other Countries 21,136 21,370
19 Railway Material EU 1,331 1,346
Other Countries 430 434
20 Gas pipes Turkey 13,527 13,678
EU 6,686 6,760
India 3,984 4,028
Other Countries 1,481 1,498
21 Hollow sections Turkey 32,387 32,746
EU 10,966 11,088
Other Countries 1,898 1,919
25A Large Welded Tubes Other Countries 15,722 15,897
25B Large Welded Tubes EU 17,022 17,211
Japan 1,471 1,487
South Korea 2,283 2,309
Turkey 1,653 1,671
Other Countries 1,850 1,871
26 Other Welded Pipes EU 19,729 19,948
UAE 11,720 11,850
Turkey 7,767 7,853
Norway 5,973 6,039
China 5,002 5,058
Other Countries 6,466 6,538
27 Non-Alloy and other alloy cold finished bars EU 7,144 7,223
Turkey 1,371 1,387
Russia 714 722
Other Countries 611 618
28 Non Alloy Wire EU 24,773 25,048
Turkey 4,336 4,384
China 2,918 2,950
Thailand 2,578 2,606
Other Countries 1,900 1,921

Developing countries listed in the DIT review are not subject to these TRQs, except in relation to certain products produced in Brazil, China, India, Saudia Arabia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, UAE and Vietnam.

For each of the product categories concerned, a part of each tariff rate quota will be allocated to the countries and territories specified.  The remaining part of each tariff rate quota, shall be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis, based on a tariff rate quota established equally for each quarter of the period of application.  The drawings on each quarterly quota shall be stopped on the twentieth working day of the month following the end of the quarterly period. At the end of each quarter, the unused balances of the tariff rate quota shall automatically be transferred to the next quarter. No unused balance at the end of the last quarter of each year of application of the definitive tariff rate quota shall be transferred.  Where the relevant quota is exhausted for a specific country, imports from that country can access the residual tariff-rate quota for the same product category. This provision shall only apply during the last quarter of each year of application of the definitive tariff-rate quota.