Judge Rejects U.S. Steel's Antitrust Claim Against China

Nov 21, 2016

A judge has thrown out an antitrust claim against China by U.S. Steel. It’s the latest twist in the Northwest Indiana steel giant’s months-long bid to ban Chinese steel imports.

International Trade Commission Administrative Law Judge Dee Lord rejected the Pittsburgh-based company’s antitrust complaint against China. But it’s not the only trade case that U.S. Steel has in the works with the ITC.

Company spokeswoman Sarah Cassella said they’re still pursuing allegations that China stole trade secrets and illegally avoided paying tariffs in order to flood the U.S. market with cheap imports. And the ITC agreed in August to increase those tariffs.

Still, Cassella said in an email that U.S. Steel is “shocked and disappointed” by Lord’s move to reject their antitrust claim. She called it an “unusual turn” and says they might ask the ITC to review the decision.

As those cases continue, American steel production is up 7 percent from this time last year, according to the American Iron & Steel Institute. Steel mills around the Great Lakes and Northwest Indiana make up 38 percent of that production, more than any other region.

Meanwhile, imports make up less of the American market now than they did last year – about a quarter, as of October.

Most of that comes from South Korea, not China, though South Korea is where China sends most of its own steel. China is still the world’s top steel producer.