House Passes Trade Customs Bill With Strong Import Enforcement Regulations

This afternoon the House of Representatives passed a compromise agreement on a trade enforcement measure that is a “positive step for the steel industry to address the evasion of trade remedy orders that has severely impacted our companies and our workers,” according to the American Iron & Steel Institute.

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By a vote of 256-158, the House passed the conference report of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act (H.R.644) which includes the ENFORCE Act – a long-standing priority focus for steel as it provides the domestic industry with new tools to address the evasion of anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders. The measure would ensure that Customs and Border Protection officials investigate industry claims of AD/CVD evasion by set statutory deadlines.

Thomas J. Gibson, president and CEO of AISI, said, “Dumped and subsidized steel imports are taking a record share of the US market, and are resulting in major facility idlings and layoffs. The effectiveness of trade remedies hinges on ensuring that the duties authorized by law are in fact collected. Enactment of the ENFORCE Act [as included in this Customs Bill] will help to ensure that is achieved.

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“We commend the leadership of the Congressional Steel Caucus, and many of our steel champions in Congress, who worked with us and our member companies to make sure the steel industry’s dire situation was front and center in trade debates.  While we may have won some battles, we are still fighting the war — to combat trade distorting practices of foreign producers and governments.  Today’s victory is a positive step, however, and we urge the Senate to pass this bill quickly and the President to sign it into law next week,” Gibson concluded.


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