On October 25, a surtax of 25% will be imposed on the imports of steel products if the imported volume exceeds the quota limits. The details regarding the quantity of such goods that may be imported under tariff rate quotas (TRQ) can be accessed from the notice issued to importers. The quota rates will be applicable for a period of 50 consecutive days.

The Canadian government announced these provisional safeguard measures on certain steel products on October 11. The notification issued by the Government of Canada argue that the influx of steel imports from the United States and other countries into Canada is a serious threat to its domestic market. According to the Canadian Department of Finance, the countermeasures were erected in response to the U.S. tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminium that adversely affects domestic steel producers and workers.

The impacted steel products include heavy plate, concrete reinforcing bars, energy tubular products, hot-rolled sheet, pre-painted steel, stainless steel wire, and wire rod. The complete description of the products along with the exclusion list is provided in the orders-in-council.

The surtax will impact China, South Korea, Brazil, Japan, Taiwan, Germany and Turkey — Canada’s top sources of steel other than its NAFTA partners.


Support for domestic companies

The government ordered the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) to conduct an investigation to determine whether or not import of foreign steel products is a precursor of serious harm to its domestic producers. Countries such as the United States, Chile, and Israel have been exempted from the purview of investigation, whereas Mexico and countries benefiting from the General Preferential Tariff have only been partially exempted.

In addition to this, the Canadian government also announced relief from surtaxes collected on imports of steel and aluminium products from the U.S. since July 1 of this year. The relief was announced after the government recognized that the imposed countermeasures  may severely impact Canadian manufacturers that are dependent on steel and aluminium from the U.S., and are intended to boost the steel industry.

If you want to learn more about the impact of Canada’s safeguard measures on steel imports, visit the Canadian Department of Finance and Bloomberg.