Commerce Dept. raises import duties on some Chinese aluminum extrusions

NEW YORK Dec 9 (Reuters) – The U.S. Commerce Department is ratcheting up pressure on some imports of aluminum extrusions, with a significant hike in the discounted duty rate for several Chinese companies.

A document posted on the Commerce Department’s website late on Tuesday showed the government has agreed to increase discounted countervailing duties on aluminum extrusion imports from 38 Chinese companies to 61.35 percent from 9.67 percent for several of them.

The countervailing duty rate for Chinese extruders not qualifying for the discounted amount is 158.96 percent. The increase comes after Commerce raised anti-dumping duties on several Chinese extruders last week, in a victory for their U.S. competitors…


15,000 Americans sign petition calling on the U.S. Trade Representative to Stop China’s Illegal Trade Practices

WASHINGTON — More than 15,000 Americans have signed a petition calling on the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to investigate China for its manipulation of the global aluminum market.

Earlier this week, two aluminum smelters in Washington state and another smelter in upstate New York announced that they will be shutting down operations as a result of China’s cheating. Another 1,500 American families are now feeling the pain. In late October 2015, 400 aluminum workers in Kentucky lost their jobs and another 600 aluminum workers in South Carolina were issued with WARN notices.

Communist China continues to provide illegal state owned aluminum producers, with interest-free loans, debt forgiveness and preferential regulatory treatment in violation of World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. The American government has done nothing to stop China job hacking tens of thousands of American aluminum workers.

Over 15,000 Americans have signed our petition calling on U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman and his team to investigate China’s cheating and initiate a trade case against China.

China Trade Task Force Executive Director Will Dempster said, “The lives of American aluminum workers and their families are being destroyed by China’s illegal trade practices. 15,000 Americans have signed our petition calling on the office of the U.S. Trade Representative to stand up to communist China. If we don’t stand up to China’s cheating, we face the end of America’s aluminum industry as we know it. Now is the time for USTR to take decisive action.”

Sign our petition today:

View the CTTF Trailer:

Batten down the Hatches on TPP

With help from Doug Palmer, Adam Behsudi and Jenny Hopkinson

ALUMINUM EXEC EXPECTS JCCT CONVERSATION ON CHINA CRISIS: A U.S. aluminum industry executive said he expects Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker to tell her counterparts at the Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade taking place in Guangzhou this weekend that a flood of highly subsidized imports from China is threatening to put them out of business. It’s one of several tactics the industry is planning to employ under its newly formed “China Trade Task Force.”

Speaking at a briefing held Thursday by the task force, Century Aluminum CEO Michael Bless said he did not rule out filing petitions for countervailing duties or even pressing for a case at the World Trade Organization, but he added that no decisions have been made. He said China’s subsidization of its industry has caused more than 3 million tons of overcapacity on the world market.

“The best way to approach this is to work with the administration to pursue under the law the right remedy here,” Bless told Pro Trade. “So where this will go on what kind of path I’d rather not predict at this point in time, we’re not sure at this point in time what the right way for this to go is.”…


Century Aluminum lobbies for action against China, but help may be too late

Century Aluminum, owner of the Mount Holly smelter in Goose Creek, has joined other U.S. aluminum producers and industry advocates in lobbying the federal government to put a stop to what it terms as unfair competition from cheap Chinese imports.

“We need immediate help,” Michael Bless, Century’s CEO, said during a China Trade Task Force forum in Washington, D.C., this week.

Whatever help might eventually come could be too little, too late.

Of the eight aluminum smelters operating in the U.S. today, half — including the Mount Holly site — have announced plans to close by year’s end, taking about 3,000 jobs with them. Three of the remaining four smelters have curtailed production by as much as two-thirds…


Illegal Chinese Aluminum Subsidies Hurting US Jobs, Smelters: Century CEO

Illegal subsidies to the Chinese aluminum industry are hurting jobs and aluminum smelting in the US, said Michael Bless, president and CEO of Century Aluminum, who attributes six-year low aluminum prices to those subsidies.

Speaking Thursday at a China Trade Task Force Event in Washington, Bless said in 2015 alone half of the aluminum smelters in the US have announced they will close by year’s end. Of the remaining operating smelters, 75% have announced significant production cutbacks and associated layoffs.

“This industry is key to the US economy,” he said.

Bless said in a letter to the US presidential candidates earlier this month that the “aggressive and illegal” subsidies are posing a risk to “tens of thousands of American jobs.” He expects the primary aluminum industry will lose 3,300 jobs this year “as a result of China manipulating the global aluminum market and not playing by the rules. … Every US smelter is at risk due to Chinese overcapacity and unfair subsidization.”…

China Trade Task Force to Host November 19 National Press Club Event on China’s Attacks on Thousands of American Workers

WASHINGTON — China Trade Task Force and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott is hosting a panel discussion at the National Press Club to highlight how thousands of American aluminum workers are losing their jobs as a result of China’s job hacking.

WHAT: China Trade Task Force Event and Live Webcast with Senator Trent Lott and the President & CEO of Century Aluminum Michael A. Bless


  • U.S. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (ret.)
  • CEO and President of Century Aluminum Michael Bless
  • Former Under Secretary for International Trade Grant Aldonas

WHEN: 10.00am Thursday, November 19, 2015

WHERE:  The National Press Club
Zenger Room, 14th Floor
529 14th Street NW,
Washington D.C. 20045

WHY: Tens of thousands of American jobs are being destroyed as a result of communist China not playing by the rules. This year alone, illegal Chinese aluminum subsidies such as interest-free loans, dumping, debt forgiveness and preferential regulatory treatment will cost more than 3,300 American workers their livelihoods.

The time has come for President Obama to initiate a dispute settlement proceeding before the World Trade Organization against the Chinese government to force communist China to eliminate these illegal aluminum subsidies and help save tens of thousands of American jobs.

RSVP for CTTF’s National Press Club event here:

Livestream CTTF’s panel discussion:

About US: China Trade Task Force is committed to savings tens of thousands of American jobs. The U.S. Aluminum market directly creates over 10,600 American jobs, indirectly supports tens of thousands more jobs and contributes over $6 billion in U.S. economic output each year. China is job hacking American workers and providing illegal subsidies to Chinese state owned aluminum producers. We are committed to protecting American jobs.

BRIEF-USW lends support to Century Aluminum’s campaign against China subsidies

Nov 9 – The United Steelworkers union, which represents workers at several U.S. aluminum smelters that will reduce or shutter production in the coming months, lent its support on Monday to a Century Aluminum campaign against cheap Chinese exports.

* USW, largest industrial union in North America with 1.2 million active and retired workers, joins China Trade Task Force (CTTF), a recently-launched pressure group supported by Century Aluminum, controlled by Glencore Plc…

HOTTER ON METALS: China the aluminium scapegoat?

China is being blamed in some quarters for the production cuts and closures plaguing the aluminium industry elsewhere, with its subsidies system and export of primary metal attracting severe criticism.

This week, a group known as the China Trade Task Force posted a video on its website as well as on YouTube, stating that China had declared a war against US aluminium workers and their families.  The video features interviews with workers at Century Aluminum’s Hawesville smelter, which is operating at 40% of capacity. The company, which blames the cuts on unfairly subsidised Chinese aluminium products and overcapacity in China, is facing curtailments and closures at several other of its smelters.  But, broadly speaking, China is not currently exporting vast amounts of primary aluminium, and the fake semis game – in which semi-fabricated aluminium products from China are sold for remelt – that the country was playing for the past year or two has dried up, as several major producers have publicly stated. So while China accounts for more than half the world’s production of aluminium, it is actually a fairly self-sufficient…

China Trade Task Force Launches Video Series: Communist China is Destroying Lives of U.S. Aluminum Workers

WASHINGTON — China Trade Task Force today officially launched a video series and a petition to highlight the plight of thousands of U.S. aluminum working who are losing their jobs as a result of China’s cheating.

President Obama has made clear that China is a “global free rider” that profits on the back of American innovation and hard work. Now tens of thousands of American families are feeling the pain as a result of China’s cheating.

In late October, 400 U.S. aluminum workers lost their jobs at a smelter in Kentucky. Another 600 workers were just issued with WARN notices in South Carolina. This is just the start of China’s war against U.S. aluminum workers and their families.

Global aluminum prices are at a six year low, yet China has increased aluminum production by over 32% this year alone. China has doubled down on production while Beijing is providing state owned domestic aluminum producers with a range of illegal subsidies such as interest free, debt forgiveness and preferential regulatory treatment.

China Trade Task Force Executive Director Will Dempster said, “Illegal Chinese aluminum subsidies are destroying lives across the United States. Our video series shines a needed spotlight on the families and communities facing ruin as a result of Chinese job hacking. The U.S. Trade Representative, Members of Congress and the American people should stand up to China and stop them from hacking American jobs. If we don’t, we face the end of America’s aluminum industry as we know it.”

View the CTTF Trailer:

Aluminum Cos. Demand US Action Against Chinese Subsidies

Law360, New York — U.S. aluminum producers on Monday called on the Obama administration to counter the government support doled out to their competitors in China, which the domestic producers claim is threatening to push them out of the market entirely.

With the launch of the new industry coalition called the China Trade Task Force, the U.S. aluminum smelters have set their sights on the purportedly illegal Chinese government subsidies and leaned on U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman to intervene on behalf of an industry that supports thousands of jobs.

“Illegal Chinese subsidies — such as direct grants, interest free loans, transfers of low cost state owned land, and preferential regulatory treatment — have collapsed the global price of aluminum,” the companies said. “This price drop has forced aluminum smelters across the United States to close while Chinese government continues to prop-up its producers through these unfair and illegal subsidies.”…