Talks on reducing excess steel output worldwide have been canceled as intensifying trade tensions among the US and other countries have left little room for cooperation. Argentina, which chairs ministerial meeting of the 33-member Global Forum on Excess Steel Capacity, scheduled on Wednesday in Paris, informed the participants of the cancellation by Monday. The ministers were to use the Paris meeting to discuss preferential policies China and other countries apply to their own steelmakers. They were also expected to adopt a report crediting Beijing’s efforts to reduce steel capacity.
But heightened trade tensions have changed the members’ tone. The US placed tariffs on aluminum and steel products from the European Union, Canada and Mexico this month. The EU and others responded by filing cases with the World Trade Organization and studying retaliatory levies.
The forum was created in December 2016 by major steel producers like the US, Europe, China, Japan, Brazil, India, and South Africa. At the first ministerial meeting, held in Berlin last November, the members agreed to such measures as regularly reporting production capacity and working to remove subsidies that distort the market.
Plans for the next ministerial meeting are undecided. Japan will take over as chair from Argentina in December.
Source : NIKKEI
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