PITTSBURGH, April 5, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United Steelworkers (USW) issued the following statement today in conjunction with the release of an updated paper Chinese Steel Overcapacity: A Legacy of Broken Promises in advance of this week's meeting between U.S. President Trump and China's President Xi.
"For too long, America has been buried under the weight of increasing trade deficits with China. In sector after sector, China's non-market, Communist Party-led economy has flooded the U.S. market with its products, most of which are unfairly traded. The result has been millions of lost jobs, closed factories, and outsourced, off-shored production.
"The U.S. steel sector has been particularly hard hit by China's policies. China has increased its overcapacity year-after-year in direct conflict with market forces. Its excess capacity has been dumped and subsidized, and flooded into the global marketplace. Despite the U.S. economic recovery, our steel sector has not shared sufficiently in the economy's growth and our members and American workers continue to suffer.
"China has repeatedly promised to reduce its overcapacity. From the highest levels of the Party, leaders have admitted that they know they must change. These promises ring hollow in a country that has tens of thousands of Internet cops trolling for citizens who dare speak of human rights or democracy. These statements ring false when the country can shut down production to showcase Beijing during the Olympics, while they jail those who want to show the world the iron grip the leadership has on dissent.
"Since 2000, the year before China joined the World Trade Organization, Chinese steelmaking capacity has increased to 10 times that of the United States. China now has 1.2 billion tons of capacity with 2015 steelmaking capacity, exceeding the combined capacity of the United States, European Union, Japan and Russia. Every year, China's capacity continues to rise.
"America cannot afford more of China's broken promises. This week, workers are looking to Presidents Trump and Xi to produce results that will reverse the continuing buildup of steelmaking capacity in China. This must be coupled with results in other critical sectors that are being hammered by Chinese non-market economic policies. Aluminum, tires, paper and a broad array of other industries have been injured by China's unfair trade practices.
"The tough rhetoric of last year's U.S. presidential campaign needs to be turned into measurable and sustained changes in our trade relationship with China. Enough is enough."
A copy of the document Chinese Steel Overcapacity: A Legacy of Broken Promises is attached.
The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.
Holly Hart (202) 778-4384
Jess Kamm Broomell (412) 562-2446
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SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)