This Morning in Metals: China Hopes to Reach U.S. Halfway in Trade Talks

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This morning in metals news, China says it hopes to reach a compromise with the U.S. on trade, the U.S. Department of Commerce self-initiated an investigation related to imports of corrosion-resistant steel products and iron ore prices continue to slide.

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Looking for a Deal

Chinese government officials recently expressed the willingness to do what is necessary to combat U.S. tariffs while also indicating a desire to reach the U.S. “halfway” for a trade deal.

The U.S.’s imposition of a 10% tariff on an additional $300 billion on Chinese goods is set to go into effect Sept. 1. Tensions were dialed back slightly this week when the United States Trade Representative announced that tariffs on select items from the $300 billion tariff list, including cellphones and laptop computers, would be delayed until later this year.

“We hope the U.S. side will meet China half-way, and implement the consensus reached by the two leaders during their meeting in Osaka, and look for mutually acceptable solutions through dialogue on the basis of equality and mutual respect,” said Hua Chunying, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, as quoted by CNBC.

DOC Launches Circumvention Probe

The U.S. Department of Commerce plans to investigate possible circumvention with respect to imports of corrosion-resistant steel products from Costa Rica, Guatemala, Malaysia, South Africa and the United Arab Emirates.

“In these inquiries, Commerce will determine whether imports of CORE completed in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Malaysia, South Africa, and the UAE using Chinese-origin substrate, or imports of CORE completed in Malaysia using Taiwanese-origin substrate, are circumventing the antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) orders on CORE from China or the AD order on CORE from Taiwan,” the Department of Commerce said in a release.

Iron Ore Prices Continue to Fall

Prices for the steelmaking material iron ore continue to fall after reaching five-year highs earlier this summer.

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According to Reuters, China’s stimulus spending has not been enough to offset the reintroduction of iron ore supplies to the market (after supply-side disruptions in Australia and Brazil earlier this year).

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