LIPETSK, May 31. /TASS/. NLMK Group has suspended investment in the development of its division in the US due to steel duties imposed in 2018, company’s main shareholder Vladimir Lisin told reporters on Friday.
"Earlier we planned to upgrade rolled stock in the US with substantial investment there, whereas now we understand that we should suspend that. We will wait, that is the matter of time, we will suspend investment in this regard until restrictions are removed," he said.
Nevertheless, Lisin did not rule out that the situation would normalize in the future.
He also noted that the decision on making a repeated request to the US Department of Commerce for exemption from 25% steel duty for NLMK’s products has not been made yet, adding that the company continues monitoring the situation.
"We assume that (retention of duty - TASS) will cause a certain deficit of products in the US, meaning a hike of prices for semi-products. That means that the US producer and consumer will not be glad in such a situation as the price of semi-products and ultimate products will rise, and that restriction will simply lead to the technical lack of slabs," he said.
In March 2018, the US imposed duties on import of steel (25%) and aluminum (10%). They apply to all countries, except Australia and Argentina. Brazil and South Korea were only granted exemptions from steel duties. In May 2019, US President signed executive orders canceling duties on steel and aluminum from Canada and Mexico. Among others, NLMK has applied to the US Department of Commerce for exemption from the US’ import duties for its products, but it was denied it in April 2019.