W&M Members Stand Up for U.S. Aluminum

Request USITC investigation & report about industry's competitiveness
February 24, 2016 — Press Releases   
Trade   

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Today, Ways & Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) wrote to the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) and requested that the agency conduct an investigation and provide a report on the factors facing the global competitiveness of the U.S. aluminum industry.

In the letter, Chairman Brady wrote, The Committee on Ways and Means is interested in obtaining current information on relevant factors affecting the global competitiveness of the U.S. aluminum industry. The U.S. aluminum industry remains a globally successful producer of aluminum products. A healthy and growing aluminum industry is not only important to our economy, but is also vital for our national defense.”

Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee Chairman Reichert (R-WA) and Committee members Boustany (R-LA), Black (R-TN), Reed (R-NY), and Smith (R-MO) led the effort in requesting this investigation. Committee members are particularly concerned about the impact of subsidies provided to foreign aluminum producers. 

Click here to view a copy of the letter.

Full text of the letter below:

February 24, 2016

The Honorable Meredith Broadbent
Chairman
U.S. International Trade Commission
500 E Street, SW
Washington, DC 20436

Dear Chairman Broadbent:

The Committee on Ways and Means is interested in obtaining current information on relevant factors affecting the global competitiveness of the U.S. aluminum industry. The U.S. aluminum industry remains a globally successful producer of aluminum products. A healthy and growing aluminum industry is not only important to our economy, but is also vital for our national defense.

In order to better assess the current market conditions confronting the U.S. industry, we request that the U.S. International Trade Commission conduct an investigation under section 332(g) of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1332(g)), and provide a report setting forth the results of the investigation. The investigation should cover unwrought (e.g., primary and secondary) and wrought (e.g., semi-finished) aluminum products.

To the extent that information is available, the report should contain:

  • an overview of the aluminum industry in the United States and other major global producing and exporting countries, including production, production capacity, capacity utilization, employment, wages, inventories, supply chains, domestic demand, and exports;
  • information on recent trade trends and developments in the global market for aluminum, including U.S. and other major foreign producer imports and exports, and trade flows through third countries for further processing and subsequent exports;
  • a comparison of the competitive strengths and weaknesses of aluminum production and exports in the United States and other major producing and exporting countries, including such factors as producer revenue and production costs, industry structure, input prices and availability, energy costs and sources, production technology, product innovation, exchange rates, and pricing, as well as government policies and programs that directly or indirectly affect aluminum production and exporting in these countries;
  • in countries where unwrought aluminum capacity has significantly increased, identify factors driving those capacity and related production changes; and
  • a qualitative and, to the extent possible, quantitative assessment of the impact of government policies and programs in major foreign aluminum producing and exporting countries on their aluminum production, exports, consumption, and domestic prices, as well as on the U.S. aluminum industry and on aluminum markets worldwide.

The report should focus primarily on the 2011-2015 time period, but examine longer term trends since 2001. To develop detailed information on the domestic aluminum market and industry, it is anticipated that the Commission will need to collect primary data from market participants through questionnaires. The Committee requests that the Commission transmit its report to Congress no later than 16 months following the receipt of this request. It is the Committee’s intent to make the Commission’s report available to the public in its entirety. Therefore, the report should not include any confidential business information.

Thank you for your attention to this request.