MetalMiner Managing Editor Taras Berezowsky recently sat down with Kevin Dempsey, Senior VP for public policy at the American Iron & Steel Institute. Dempsey leads the AISI public policy team representing the interests of North American steel producers and also serves as General Counsel to the Institute. Before that he was a practicing attorney who specialized in trade matters.
During his years on Capitol Hill and in the private sector, Dempsey has worked extensively on international trade negotiations, including the Doha Development Agenda and the original negotiations on the accession of China to the World Trade Organization. He also has considerable experience with U.S. and international law related to subsidies, trade remedies, market access, intellectual property rights, and product standards, as well as U.S. legislative procedures for authorizing and implementing trade agreements.
As such, he possesses a veritable wealth of knowledge about the issue of market economy status for China and how that would impact the U.S. steel industry.
Taras Berezowsky: Just initially, I saw in your bio that you had worked on China’s original agreement of accession to the WTO. In what capacity did you work with them?
Kevin Dempsey: I was a lawyer, a trade lawyer, in private practice representing a number of U.S. industries that were interested in the question of China’s role in the WTO and making sure that the rules going forward were going to be fair ones that ensure fair competition with China.
A big issue at the time was the extensive state involvement in the Chinese economy and the need to make sure that we had effective laws, including the ability to continue to treat China as a non-market economy under the anti-dumping law.