EUROFER supports the ambitious White Paper on Foreign Subsidies and agrees with the Commission on the presence of a regulatory gap, which we believe exists and needs to be filled:
- The steel sector has experienced the near impossibility to have WTO actions initiated tackling third country subsidies and State-Owned Enterprises at the root, due to the prohibitive evidence and injury requirements to take action under the WTO ASCM. Moreover, many WTO members are failing to respect their obligations to notify subsidies to the WTO, which complicates the imposition of sanctions to remedy situations of unfair competition, even with a functioning Appellate Body.
- The traditional (vital) anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures are punctual remedies limited to one product at the time and per country.
- The EU steel safeguard are exceptional, temporary measures (to expire on 1 July 2021) aimed at mitigating trade diversion. With economic depressions, mills that are at risk of closure or experiencing losses will be more and more acquired by subsidised third country companies which will distort and possibly take control of an increasingly high share of the EU market, undermining the industrial base in the EU