WASHINGTON, March 25 The U.S. Commerce
Department should reverse three preliminary decisions against
steelmakers with operations in the United States, the chairman
of the Congressional Steel Caucus said on Tuesday.
If the department does not reconsider when it hands down
final decisions later this year, Representative Tim Murphy said
Congress should consider introducing legislation. The companies
with U.S. operations had been seeking duties on certain steel
"The Commerce Department must take a stand now against these
violations of international trade law," the Pennsylvania
Republican said in remarks prepared for a hearing of the caucus,
a bipartisan group of about 100 members of Congress who mostly
represent districts with steel manufacturers.
Murphy said Commerce should impose duties on imports of
steel tube for the oil and gas industry from South Korea and
Turkey, and on rebar from Turkey.
In February, Commerce found imports of Turkish rebar, which
is steel used to reinforce concrete, had not been made using
subsidies that unfairly benefited foreign companies. A separate
ruling is due in April on whether the rebar was sold below
The case was filed by Nucor Corp, Gerdau Ameristeel
US, Commercial Metals Company, Cascade Steel Rolling
Mills and Byer Steel Group.
In another preliminary decision announced in February,
Commerce opted not to impose duties on so-called oil country
tubular goods from South Korea used to drill for oil and gas.
Shares of companies that produce the tubes in the United States
The investigation came after a petition from producers
including Europe's Tenaris and Vallourec,
North America's Northwest Pipe Co and U.S. Steel Corp
, and Russia's TMK. All have operations in the
The Commerce Department did say imports from India, the
Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine and
Vietnam were being sold at unfairly low prices.
In a separate decision in December, the department declined
to impose a duty on producers of oil country tubular goods in
Turkey, finding that they enjoyed no significant subsidy.
(Reporting by Krista Hughes in Washington; Writing by Allison
Martell; Editing by Ros Krasny and Lisa Von Ahn)