This Morning in Metals: USTR releases annual WTO compliance report for China, Russia

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U.S., China and Russia flags

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This morning in metals news: the United States Trade Representative released its annually mandated report covering the WTO rules compliance of China and Russia; U.S. Steel officially closed on its acquisition of the remaining equity of Big River Steel; and the Pilbara Ports Authority earlier this month reported shipping data for December.

USTR releases annual WTO compliance report for China, Russia

As mandated by Congress, the United States Trade Representative on Friday released its annual report on the WTO compliance of China and Russia.

“The United States has been closely monitoring China’s progress in implementing its numerous commitments under the Phase One Agreement and has regularly engaged China using the extensive consultation processes established by the agreement to discuss China’s implementation progress and any concerns as they arise,” the report reads. “Currently, the evidence indicates that China has been moving forward in good faith with the implementation of its commitments, making substantial progress in many areas.

“Because the Phase One Agreement does not cover all of the United States’ concerns, the United States will need to turn to Phase Two of its trade negotiations with China in order to secure resolutions to important outstanding issues.”

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U.S. Steel closes acquisition of remaining Big River Steel equity

In December, U.S. Steel announced plans to acquire the remaining equity in Arkansas-based Big River Steel for $774 million.

A little over a month later, U.S. Steel announced it had closed on the acquisition of the equity.

“We are creating the first ‘Best of Both’ integrated and mini mill steel company. Taking a page from the Big River Steel playbook, we are closing on this world competitive green steel asset purchase under budget and ahead of schedule,” U. S. Steel President and CEO David Burritt said.

Pilbara Ports Authority: December 2020 shipping flat year over year

Australia’s Pilbara Ports Authority reported December 2020 throughput of 64.5 million tonnes, about flat compared with December 2019.

At the Port of Port Hedland, a critical iron ore terminal, the port posted throughput of 47.3 million tonnes. Of that total, 46.5 million tonnes were iron ore exports.

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