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The EU and the WTO | Brussels, 27 September 2019

Commission decides to adjust the existing safeguards for steel

Today (27 September 2019), the European Commission published its decision to adopt the adjustments to the steel safeguard measures. These will take effect as of 1 October 2019.

The decision to proceed with the adjustments to the existing steel safeguard measures, in place since July 2018, follows the wide support received by the EU Member States, representing more than 90% of the population. Prior to consulting the EU Member States, the Commission had notified the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and held a number of consultations with several affected WTO Members on the proposed adjustments, as is foreseen under the international trade rules.

The adjustments will make the existing steel safeguard measures more effective and will ensure that they better reflect the current situation in the steel sector by:

  • Improving the functioning of the quota for some products, including hot-rolled flat steel and steel intended for the automotive sector
  • Updating the list of exclusions for developing countries on the basis of more recent imports statistics
  • Slowing down the liberalisation of imports by reducing the pace of progressive increase of the import quotas from 5% to 3%

The safeguard measures were provisionally put in place in July 2018 and have been introduced in their definitive form in February 2019, to prevent serious injury for the EU steel industry following the increased imports and trade diversions caused by the U.S. decision to impose tariffs on steel products last year.

For more information

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/1590 of 26 September 2019 amending Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/159 imposing definitive safeguard measures against imports of certain steel products

Commission presents proposal for adjustments to existing safeguard measures for steel

Press release on existing measures