Argentina agrees to steel export quota following US' Section 232 investigation

The Argentinian government has agreed to quotas on steel products exported to the United States, thus avoiding tariffs associated with the US' Section 232 investigation, according to national steel association Acero Argentino.

The country agreed to limit exports of steel products to the US to 180,000 tonnes per year, based on the average of steel exports during the past three years plus an additional 35%. Such exports will be exempt from a 25% tariff imposed on steel from several countries following the Section 232 investigation into US imports on national security grounds.

"It is a very positive outcome, as it will allow the country to maintain exports and production levels," Acero Argentino executive director Carlos Alberto Vaccaro told Metal Bulletin on Wednesday May 2. "We are very satisfied with the negotiations."

Although the quotas are not split by products, Argentina has been exporting mostly seamless tubes to the US, and this trend will continue, according to the association.

"The additional 35% was defined because steel exports in 2015 and 2016 were too low, influenced by the poor performance of the oil and gas sector," Vaccaro said.

Last year, Argentina exported around 200,000 tonnes of seamless tubes to the US.

The US government announced that it reached agreements in principle with Argentina, Australia and Brazil with respect to steel and aluminium quotas, but it did not give further details.

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