President of the Basque Country Íñigo Urkullu today (27 January) called upon the European institutions to put a stop to market dumping and "unfair competition" by Asian economies, particularly in regard to China and the steel sector.
European Union ministers agreed a list of "concrete actions" to deal with the crisis facing the steel sector - but failed to agree on urgent measures that steelmakers are demanding to stem a flood of cheap imports from China which caused 5,000 job looses in the sector over the past three months.
SPECIAL REPORT / European Union leaders are in broad agreement over the need to encourage manufacturing industries. But walking the talk will require reforms at EU level – on energy, climate and trade – that require clearer support from European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, argues Gordon Moffat, from the Eurofer steel association.
SPECIAL REPORT / After a year of closures, sackings and cut-backs, arguments about how to turn European industry around will be to the fore this year as debate intensifies around the correct policy response, and doubts linger over the EU’s ability to deliver.
Two weeks after ArcelorMittal pulled out from the Ulcos low-emission steelmaking project in France, EU Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said new EU funding would be available for carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects within 12 months.
SPECIAL REPORT / Steelmakers and other metals industries fear that limits the EU is considering imposing on the amount of natural resources they use will push them out of Europe, where environmental regulations are less stringent.
The 7 February 2012 EurActiv Stakeholder Workshop at the Conrad Hotel in Brussels discussed global and European perspectives on raw materials and resource efficiency. Speaking are Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy MEP for the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe from the Netherlands Jean-Louis Moray Director of Eurofer and Pascal Payet-Gaspard, Secretary-General of the International Stainless Steel Forum. Interviews by Raymond Frenken and Frederic Simon.
European steelmakers warn they have reached the limits of how much recycled metal can feed their mills as competition for scrap is driving exports to emerging Asian economies. EurActiv reports from ArcelorMittal's factory in Ghent, Belgium.
In a drive to boost recycling markets, the European Union has adopted quality criteria for iron, steel and aluminium scrap, with similar rules in the pipeline for other materials such as copper, paper, glass and compost.
European industry bodies have called on the EU to fight excessive iron ore prices and prevent unfair competition, saying the current situation could hamper economic recovery and harm the competitiveness of manufacturing in Europe.
As US lawmakers prepare to draft the country's emerging climate policy, fears have been expressed by steelmakers and other energy-intensive industries about competitive disadvantage, echoing a debate that has been raging in Europe since the adoption of the EU emissions trading scheme (EU ETS).
The Commission has launched an investigation into imports of steel from China, South Korea and Taiwan, which European steelmakers have complained are being dumped on the market at below cost price, putting thousands of jobs at stake.
Europe's anti-dumping policy looks set to be put to the test again as European steelmakers up the pressure on the Commission to impose punitive duties on imports from China, South Korea and Taiwan, which they say are being dumped on the market at below cost price. But importers warned such duties could affect some seven million metalworkers and mechanical engineers in Europe who rely on cheap imports to remain competitive.