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STEEL INDUSTRY CEO'S SAY COMMERCE RULING CONFIRMS 'MASSIVE' FOREIGN STEEL SUBSIDIES

 WASHINGTON, Nov. 30 ~PRNewswire~ -- America's leading producers of flat-rolled carbon steel issued the following joint statement today after the U.S. Department of Commerce ruled on a preliminary basis that numerous foreign governments are heavily subsidizing their flat-rolled exports to the United States:
 Today's decision, coming after months of detailed investigation and review of foreign steel practices by the Commerce Department, confirms that foreign government subsidies on a massive scale are adversely affecting the fair trade of steel in the U.S. market.
 The evidence compiled by Commerce makes it clear that the imposition of countervailing duties, as recognized under existing U.S. law and by the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, is the necessary and appropriate remedy for these market abuses. Foreign producers will no doubt cry "harassment," but no one who believes in the established rules of free trade can possibly defend the market distortions which are documented in this ruling.
 While unfair trade in steel has been with us for many years, the situation today is noteworthy because U.S. producers are the low- cost, high-quality producers for the domestic market. We have the capacity both to meet consumer demands and to compete successfully in a fair and open market without government protection.
 We believe today's decision will move us closer to our goal of having a market determined by competitive factors -- such as quality, productivity and customer satisfaction -- rather than the disruptive industrial policies of foreign governments.
 As a result, we fully expect the volume of domestic orders -- and our capacity utilization rates -- to rise, allowing our industry to move toward profitability. This will be welcome news to our employees, to our shareholders and to our communities who for years have suffered substantial injury due to unfairly-subsidized imports.
 The above statement was issued by Curtis H. Barnette, chairman and CEO of Bethlehem Steel Corp.; Robert J. Darnall, chairman, president and CEO of Inland Steel Industries, Inc.; Ronald H. Doerr, president and COO of National Steel Corp.; David H. Hoag, chairman and CEO of LTV Corp.; Robert L. Purdum, chairman of Armco Inc.; Thomas C. Graham, CEO of Armco Steel Co., L.P.; and Thomas J. Usher, president of U.S. Steel Group, a unit of USX Corp. The other six companies who are petitioners in these cases are Geneva Steel; Gulf States Steel, Inc. of Alabama; Laclede Steel Co.; Lukens Steel Company; Sharon Steel Corp.; and WCI Steel, Inc.
 -0- 11~30~92
 ~CONTACT: Mark Johnson of the Sawyer~Miller Group, 202-223-1300, for the steel companies~


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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 30, 1992
Words:438
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