"Aluminum is a critical material used throughout aerospace, automotive, electrical transmission and other sectors. Aleris and its highly skilled work force has been a leader in developing cutting-edge applications for aluminum. Its ballistic-resistant products are used in a number of military applications. China has targeted the sector for development and domination, and the proposed acquisition by Zhongwang is part of that overall strategy.
"Several weeks ago, press reports highlighted Zhongwang's extensive attempts to circumvent and evade U.S. trade laws for Chinese-produced aluminum. The Department of Homeland Security has now launched an investigation into the parent company of the firm seeking to acquire Aleris. China Zhongwang Holdings Ltd.'s network of activities is designed to undermine its competitors. The transaction must be rejected on both national and economic security grounds.
"China's leaders have pushed its major state-owned and private companies to invest overseas, acquire technologies and manufacturing know-how, and expand their market share. The country continues to build up massive overcapacity in the aluminum sector and decimate U.S. production. This transaction is part of a broader economic plan.
"It's time for America to stand up and fight for our jobs and our future."
The letter that was initiated by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and signed by 12 senators: Wyden, Schumer (D-NY), Casey (D-PA), Manchin (D-WV), Gillibrand (D-NY), Donnelly (D-IN), Portman (R-OH), Stabenow (D-MI), Merkley (D-OR), Klobuchar (D-MN), Baldwin (D-WI) and Franken (D-MN). The full text can be found here.
A copy of the earlier letter from President Gerard to Secretary Lew, who presides over CFIUS, is available here.
The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries, including metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining, mining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.
CONTACT: Wayne Ranick (412) 562-2444
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SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)