Turkey starts investigation into steel imports

The Turkish ministry of economy has started an investigation into the impact of steel imports on the country's domestic steelmaking industry, it said on Friday, April 27.

Market participants believe the investigation is a precautionary measure against the Section 232 tariffs being introduced by the US, because Turkey may become an open market for dumped products once the US measures start to have an impact on global steel producers.

The probe includes flat, long and stainless steel, along with steel tube & pipe products.

The investigation includes hot-rolled flat steel imports with HS code 7208 and 7211, cold-rolled flat steel with HS code 7209, coated flat steel with HS code 7210 and 7212, and alloy flat steel with HS code 7225 and 7226.

The long steel products under investigation are wire rod under HS code 7213 and 7227, steel bars under HS code 7214, 7215, sections under HS code 7216, steel wires under HS code 7217, and bars and sections under HS code 7228.

Railway or tramway track iron or steel under HS code 7302, and tube & pipe under HS code 7303, 7304, 7305 and 7306 are also under investigation, along with stainless flat steel under HS codes 7219 and 7220.

The probe will be finalized in nine months’ time, but may be extended by another six months if required, the ministry said.

If protective measures are taken, a duty exemption for imports from Europe will be discussed, the ministry added.

The European Commission (EC) launched a similar safeguarding case into 26 carbon and stainless steel products imported into the EU on March 26, and that is expected to be finalized in early May.

The Turkish Steel Producers Association (TCUD) requested protective trade measures in early April.

Turkey imported 8,390,305 tonnes of flat steel in 2017, under HS codes 7209, 7209, 7210, 7211, 7212, 7225, and 7226, up by 3.14% compared to 8,134,707 tonnes in 2016, according to the Turkish Statistical Institute (TUIK). 

Metal Bulletin’s weekly price assessment for Turkish HRC imports was $610-630 per tonne cfr on Friday, April 20, falling from $615-640 per tonne cfr.

The country’s long steel imports amounted to 1,312,676 tonnes in 2017 – under HS codes 7213, 7214, 7215, 7216, 7217, 7227, and 7228 – down 14.73% from the 1,539,415 tonnes imported in 2016.

Metal Bulletin’s weekly price assessment for domestic wire rod in Turkey was $590-610 per tonne ex-works on Thursday, April 26, down from the $610-630 per tonne.