September 21, 2020

U.S. Commerce Department Releases Enhanced Steel Import Monitoring And Analysis System

On Friday, September 11, the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) announced the adoption of a final rule modernizing the Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) system.

The rule, which goes into effect October 13, 2020:

  • Requires steel import license applicants to identify not only the country of origin, but also the country where steel used in the manufacture of the imported product was melted and poured, as defined in the final rule;
  • Expand the scope of steel products subject to the import licensing requirement to include all products subject to Section 232 tariffs;
  • Extend the SIMA system indefinitely; and
  • Codify the existing low-value license requirement for certain steel entries up to $5,000.

The department also announced that it will launch a new online platform for SIMA on the DOC’s website on October 13, 2020.

In its news release, the DOC said, “The updated SIMA will offer free, modern data analytic tools to the public for performing detailed, customized data analysis. These tools will aid in the identification of changing trade patterns and surges in U.S. imports of steel products, as well as potential circumvention and evasion.”

The department will hold a series of webinars for users to become familiar with the new system. These sessions will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Click here to see specific dates and times of the demonstrations, and for information about participating.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said, “These significant improvements to SIMA will enable Commerce and the public to more readily identify transshipment and circumvention involving steel imports.”

The DOC’s final rule is available here.

In other news related to steel products: the U.S. International Trade Commission announced on Wednesday, September 16 that it will keep in place existing antidumping and countervailing duty orders on imports of steel concrete reinforcing bar from Mexico and Turkey. The announcement means that existing penalties will remain in place for five additional years.