Bipartisan letter argues against proposed steel tariffs

Posted: 15 June 2023 | | No comments yet

Thirty-six members of Congress have written a bipartisan letter to the Biden Administration urging it to oppose steel tariffs to protect consumers and manufacturers.


On 12 June 2023, 36 members of Congress wrote a bipartisan letter to the Biden Administration, urging it to oppose a series of tariffs currently under consideration at the International Trade Commission and US Department of Commerce.

The tariff plans were put forward by Cleveland-Cliffs, a mining company based in Cleveland, Ohio, and involve increasing the price of imported tinplate steel by up to 300 percent. Imported tinplate steel is a metal used to package a multitude of items, including food such as canned vegetables.

Within the letter, the 36 members of Congress express their concern regarding the tariffs, claiming that Cleveland-Cliffs’ proposal “presents unique challenges for the Commerce Department and the US economy”.

“The downstream impact on can manufacturers, who rely on tin mill products to make billions of steel cans annually, threatens to cause significant price increases and possible job losses,” the 36 members of Congress stated in the letter.

They went on to say that “the alleged anti-dumping margins average 132 percent”, claiming that “tariffs at those levels would dramatically increase the cost of tin plate used for canned packaging including food cans, aerosol cans and jar lids” amongst other components that require tin mill steel.

The members of Congress explained in the letter that they believe tariffs would lead to additional costs on domestic manufacturers and consumers at a time where there is “already high inflation and grocery prices”.

With food inflation affecting families across the US, the members of Congress recognise in the letter that canned food items, including those packaged using tin mill steel, “become a low-cost option for American families”. However, they state that canned good price increases would particularly impact vulnerable populations, as well as food banks and consumers that rely on government nutrition and feeding assistance programmes.

Organisations urge “bipartisan” action for food safety concerns

As well as concern about costs for consumers, the members on Congress state that the imposition of antidumping duties on tin mill products “will have adverse effect on domestic can manufacturing” and say this will “adversely impact the operations of US can manufacturers”.

They express concern that there could be “drastic job losses” in downstream domestic manufacturing industries in the US, and urge the Biden Administration to protect the US steel industry and its downstream partners from “unfair trade practices”.

To read the full letter, click here.

New Food will notify its readers of any further updates.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *