May 21, 2023

United States, Europe Still Working Toward Green Steel, Aluminum Agreement

In October 2021, the Biden administration and the European Union (EU) announced their commitment to negotiate, by 2024, the world’s first green steel and aluminum agreement. As part of the pact, the U.S. government suspended its section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs that former President Donald Trump had imposed on EU steel and aluminum and the EU suspended its retaliatory tariffs on U.S. products.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai is leading the negotiations.

The goal of the pact, which is still being negotiated, would be to encourage investment in green metals production by ensuring a competitive industry and excluding metals from countries that do not comply with market principles.

In a visit to the United States earlier this year, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen reaffirmed the joint commitment, which she envisions will bring together a group of like-minded states that will agree on a set of measures to curtail market access for carbon-intensive steel and aluminum and fight market-distorting practices in the metals sector.

Last week, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, also reaffirmed the commitment and outlined the potential benefits. She said the deal would not only help the country address climate change, but also would aid policymakers in dealing with metals dumping from China and other non-market economies. “We need a global steel arrangement that preferences higher quality, green steel and aluminum. That’s the right way to disadvantage China in a way that lifts everything,” Secretary Raimondo argued.

As Reuters reported, in her remarks Secretary Raimondo also suggested the Biden administration would maintain a strong trade anti-dumping and anti-subsidy enforcement capacity.

Read more about the pact with the EU here.

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