[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 51 (Thursday, March 15, 2018)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 11625-11630]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-05478]




                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 83 , No. 51 / Thursday, March 15, 2018 / 
Presidential Documents

[[Page 11625]]


                Proclamation 9705 of March 8, 2018

                
Adjusting Imports of Steel Into the United States

                By the President of the United States of America

                A Proclamation

                1. On January 11, 2018, the Secretary of Commerce 
                (Secretary) transmitted to me a report on his 
                investigation into the effect of imports of steel mill 
                articles (steel articles) on the national security of 
                the United States under section 232 of the Trade 
                Expansion Act of 1962, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1862).

                2. The Secretary found and advised me of his opinion 
                that steel articles are being imported into the United 
                States in such quantities and under such circumstances 
                as to threaten to impair the national security of the 
                United States. The Secretary found that the present 
                quantities of steel articles imports and the 
                circumstances of global excess capacity for producing 
                steel are ``weakening our internal economy,'' resulting 
                in the persistent threat of further closures of 
                domestic steel production facilities and the 
                ``shrinking [of our] ability to meet national security 
                production requirements in a national emergency.'' 
                Because of these risks and the risk that the United 
                States may be unable to ``meet [steel] demands for 
                national defense and critical industries in a national 
                emergency,'' and taking into account the close relation 
                of the economic welfare of the Nation to our national 
                security, see 19 U.S.C. 1862(d), the Secretary 
                concluded that the present quantities and circumstances 
                of steel articles imports threaten to impair the 
                national security as defined in section 232 of the 
                Trade Expansion Act of 1962, as amended.

                3. In reaching this conclusion, the Secretary 
                considered the previous U.S. Government measures and 
                actions on steel articles imports and excess capacity, 
                including actions taken under Presidents Reagan, George 
                H.W. Bush, Clinton, and George W. Bush. The Secretary 
                also considered the Department of Commerce's narrower 
                investigation of iron ore and semi-finished steel 
                imports in 2001, and found the recommendations in that 
                report to be outdated given the dramatic changes in the 
                steel industry since 2001, including the increased 
                level of global excess capacity, the increased level of 
                imports, the reduction in basic oxygen furnace 
                facilities, the number of idled facilities despite 
                increased demand for steel in critical industries, and 
                the potential impact of further plant closures on 
                capacity needed in a national emergency.

                4. In light of this conclusion, the Secretary 
                recommended actions to adjust the imports of steel 
                articles so that such imports will not threaten to 
                impair the national security. Among those 
                recommendations was a global tariff of 24 percent on 
                imports of steel articles in order to reduce imports to 
                a level that the Secretary assessed would enable 
                domestic steel producers to use approximately 80 
                percent of existing domestic production capacity and 
                thereby achieve long-term economic viability through 
                increased production. The Secretary has also 
                recommended that I authorize him, in response to 
                specific requests from affected domestic parties, to 
                exclude from any adopted import restrictions those 
                steel articles for which the Secretary determines there 
                is a lack of sufficient U.S. production capacity of 
                comparable products, or to exclude steel articles from 
                such restrictions for specific national security-based 
                considerations.

[[Page 11626]]

                5. I concur in the Secretary's finding that steel 
                articles are being imported into the United States in 
                such quantities and under such circumstances as to 
                threaten to impair the national security of the United 
                States, and I have considered his recommendations.

                6. Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, as 
                amended, authorizes the President to adjust the imports 
                of an article and its derivatives that are being 
                imported into the United States in such quantities or 
                under such circumstances as to threaten to impair the 
                national security.

                7. Section 604 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (19 
                U.S.C. 2483), authorizes the President to embody in the 
                Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) 
                the substance of acts affecting import treatment, and 
                actions thereunder, including the removal, 
                modification, continuance, or imposition of any rate of 
                duty or other import restriction.

                8. In the exercise of these authorities, I have decided 
                to adjust the imports of steel articles by imposing a 
                25 percent ad valorem tariff on steel articles, as 
                defined below, imported from all countries except 
                Canada and Mexico. In my judgment, this tariff is 
                necessary and appropriate in light of the many factors 
                I have considered, including the Secretary's report, 
                updated import and production numbers for 2017, the 
                failure of countries to agree on measures to reduce 
                global excess capacity, the continued high level of 
                imports since the beginning of the year, and special 
                circumstances that exist with respect to Canada and 
                Mexico. This relief will help our domestic steel 
                industry to revive idled facilities, open closed mills, 
                preserve necessary skills by hiring new steel workers, 
                and maintain or increase production, which will reduce 
                our Nation's need to rely on foreign producers for 
                steel and ensure that domestic producers can continue 
                to supply all the steel necessary for critical 
                industries and national defense. Under current 
                circumstances, this tariff is necessary and appropriate 
                to address the threat that imports of steel articles 
                pose to the national security.

                9. In adopting this tariff, I recognize that our Nation 
                has important security relationships with some 
                countries whose exports of steel articles to the United 
                States weaken our internal economy and thereby threaten 
                to impair the national security. I also recognize our 
                shared concern about global excess capacity, a 
                circumstance that is contributing to the threatened 
                impairment of the national security. Any country with 
                which we have a security relationship is welcome to 
                discuss with the United States alternative ways to 
                address the threatened impairment of the national 
                security caused by imports from that country. Should 
                the United States and any such country arrive at a 
                satisfactory alternative means to address the threat to 
                the national security such that I determine that 
                imports from that country no longer threaten to impair 
                the national security, I may remove or modify the 
                restriction on steel articles imports from that country 
                and, if necessary, make any corresponding adjustments 
                to the tariff as it applies to other countries as our 
                national security interests require.

                10. I conclude that Canada and Mexico present a special 
                case. Given our shared commitment to supporting each 
                other in addressing national security concerns, our 
                shared commitment to addressing global excess capacity 
                for producing steel, the physical proximity of our 
                respective industrial bases, the robust economic 
                integration between our countries, the export of steel 
                articles produced in the United States to Canada and 
                Mexico, and the close relation of the economic welfare 
                of the United States to our national security, see 19 
                U.S.C. 1862(d), I have determined that the necessary 
                and appropriate means to address the threat to the 
                national security posed by imports of steel articles 
                from Canada and Mexico is to continue ongoing 
                discussions with these countries and to exempt steel 
                articles imports from these countries from the tariff, 
                at least at this time. I expect that Canada and Mexico 
                will take action to prevent transshipment of steel 
                articles through Canada and Mexico to the United 
                States.

                11. In the meantime, the tariff imposed by this 
                proclamation is an important first step in ensuring the 
                economic viability of our domestic steel industry.

[[Page 11627]]

                Without this tariff and satisfactory outcomes in 
                ongoing negotiations with Canada and Mexico, the 
                industry will continue to decline, leaving the United 
                States at risk of becoming reliant on foreign producers 
                of steel to meet our national security needs--a 
                situation that is fundamentally inconsistent with the 
                safety and security of the American people. It is my 
                judgment that the tariff imposed by this proclamation 
                is necessary and appropriate to adjust imports of steel 
                articles so that such imports will not threaten to 
                impair the national security as defined in section 232 
                of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, as amended.

                NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the 
                United States of America, by the authority vested in me 
                by the Constitution and the laws of the United States 
                of America, including section 301 of title 3, United 
                States Code, section 604 of the Trade Act of 1974, as 
                amended, and section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 
                1962, as amended, do hereby proclaim as follows:

                (1) For the purposes of this proclamation, ``steel 
                articles'' are defined at the Harmonized Tariff 
                Schedule (HTS) 6-digit level as: 7206.10 through 
                7216.50, 7216.99 through 7301.10, 7302.10, 7302.40 
                through 7302.90, and 7304.10 through 7306.90, including 
                any subsequent revisions to these HTS classifications.

                (2) In order to establish increases in the duty rate on 
                imports of steel articles, subchapter III of chapter 99 
                of the HTSUS is modified as provided in the Annex to 
                this proclamation. Except as otherwise provided in this 
                proclamation, or in notices published pursuant to 
                clause 3 of this proclamation, all steel articles 
                imports specified in the Annex shall be subject to an 
                additional 25 percent ad valorem rate of duty with 
                respect to goods entered, or withdrawn from warehouse 
                for consumption, on or after 12:01 a.m. eastern 
                daylight time on March 23, 2018. This rate of duty, 
                which is in addition to any other duties, fees, 
                exactions, and charges applicable to such imported 
                steel articles, shall apply to imports of steel 
                articles from all countries except Canada and Mexico.

                (3) The Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary 
                of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary 
                of Defense, the United States Trade Representative 
                (USTR), the Assistant to the President for National 
                Security Affairs, the Assistant to the President for 
                Economic Policy, and such other senior Executive Branch 
                officials as the Secretary deems appropriate, is hereby 
                authorized to provide relief from the additional duties 
                set forth in clause 2 of this proclamation for any 
                steel article determined not to be produced in the 
                United States in a sufficient and reasonably available 
                amount or of a satisfactory quality and is also 
                authorized to provide such relief based upon specific 
                national security considerations. Such relief shall be 
                provided for a steel article only after a request for 
                exclusion is made by a directly affected party located 
                in the United States. If the Secretary determines that 
                a particular steel article should be excluded, the 
                Secretary shall, upon publishing a notice of such 
                determination in the Federal Register, notify Customs 
                and Border Protection (CBP) of the Department of 
                Homeland Security concerning such article so that it 
                will be excluded from the duties described in clause 2 
                of this proclamation. The Secretary shall consult with 
                CBP to determine whether the HTSUS provisions created 
                by the Annex to this proclamation should be modified in 
                order to ensure the proper administration of such 
                exclusion, and, if so, shall make such modification to 
                the HTSUS through a notice in the Federal Register.

                (4) Within 10 days after the date of this proclamation, 
                the Secretary shall issue procedures for the requests 
                for exclusion described in clause 3 of this 
                proclamation. The issuance of such procedures is exempt 
                from Executive Order 13771 of January 30, 2017 
                (Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs).

                (5) (a) The modifications to the HTSUS made by the 
                Annex to this proclamation shall be effective with 
                respect to goods entered, or withdrawn from warehouse 
                for consumption, on or after 12:01 a.m. eastern 
                daylight time

[[Page 11628]]

                on March 23, 2018, and shall continue in effect, unless 
                such actions are expressly reduced, modified, or 
                terminated.

                    (b) The Secretary shall continue to monitor imports 
                of steel articles and shall, from time to time, in 
                consultation with the Secretary of State, the Secretary 
                of the Treasury, the Secretary of Defense, the USTR, 
                the Assistant to the President for National Security 
                Affairs, the Assistant to the President for Economic 
                Policy, the Director of the Office of Management and 
                Budget, and such other senior Executive Branch 
                officials as the Secretary deems appropriate, review 
                the status of such imports with respect to the national 
                security. The Secretary shall inform the President of 
                any circumstances that in the Secretary's opinion might 
                indicate the need for further action by the President 
                under section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, 
                as amended. The Secretary shall also inform the 
                President of any circumstance that in the Secretary's 
                opinion might indicate that the increase in duty rate 
                provided for in this proclamation is no longer 
                necessary.

                (6) Any provision of previous proclamations and 
                Executive Orders that is inconsistent with the actions 
                taken in this proclamation is superseded to the extent 
                of such inconsistency.

                IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this 
                eighth day of March, in the year of our Lord two 
                thousand eighteen, and of the Independence of the 
                United States of America the two hundred and forty-
                second.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

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[FR Doc. 2018-05478
Filed 3-14-18; 11:15 am]
Billing code 7020-02-C