U.S. and Japan Reach Section 232 Agreement for Steel Tariff-Rate Quota

Washington, DC: Today, the United States and Japan reached an agreement that allows imports of Japanese steel to be subject to a tariff-rate quota (TRQ), allowing a certain amount of imports to enter the U.S. free of any Section 232 tariffs.

The agreement calls for quota volumes of 1.25 million metric tons. This amount is based on 2018-2019 shipment levels. Other key provisions of the deal include a melted and poured requirement and counting exclusions against the quota volume.

SMA president Philip K. Bell said “The SMA is pleased with this agreement. It shows that the U.S. government is committed to negotiating alternative schemes to the 232 tariffs on a case-by-case, country-by-country basis. We are particularly glad to see that exclusion-based imports of Japanese steel products will count against the quota volumes. In 2021, 58 percent of Japanese imports came to our shores as exclusions. This represents approximately 550,000 metric tons of steel products.”

Bell added, “The melted and poured requirement will help prevent circumvention and transshipment of steel products and the inclusion of an adjustment mechanism will allow the flexibility needed to deal with changes in the global steel market. Overall, this is a strong deal for American steelmakers and it shows that we should not take a one size fits all approach when it comes to our jobs, environment and economic growth.”

The agreement is set to take effect on April 1, 2022. Find out more here.

About the SMA

SMA is the largest steel industry trade association in the United States and is the primary trade association representing North American EAF steel producers. EAF steelmakers account for almost 70 percent of domestic steelmaking capacity using an innovative, 21st century production process that is less energy-intensive and has lower carbon emissions than traditional steelmaking. For more information check out our LinkedIn page.