February 14, 2018

Young Defends Indiana Steel and Aluminum Industries During White House Meeting

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) met this week with President Trump at the White House along with a bipartisan group of 19 Senate and House colleagues to discuss trade issues. The Congressional delegation met with President Trump, Vice President Pence, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, and National Economic Council Chairman Gary Cohn to discuss the ongoing dual investigations into the effect of imports of steel and aluminum on U.S. national security.

Senator Young reinforced to the President and his Cabinet the importance of both the steel and aluminum industries to Indiana, and urged a balanced approach to the import investigations. Indiana is one of the largest producers and users of both steel and aluminum products. The steel mill industry supports approximately 24,000 Hoosier jobs and the steel industry at large supports in excess of 160,000 high-paying Indiana manufacturing jobs. The Hoosier Aluminum industry supports approximately 45,000 high-paying manufacturing jobs statewide.

“I represent a state that is not only a major manufacturer of steel but we have the downstream users, which you alluded to. Clearly, you understand the need to balance the two, to come up with a balanced approach here,” Senator Young said during the meeting. “I think the main target – and I’ll just speak plainly with you, sir – should be China. They’re violating the international rules, stealing our intellectual property, and overproducing steel products and other products.”


Senator Young specifically urged the President to tailor any final 232 actions implemented on the source of the problem – Chinese overproduction. In the past decade, both the steel and aluminum sectors have seen a marked increase in the production of steel and aluminum in China. Senator Young reinforced that any final actions implemented by the President must focus on Chinese overcapacity and any subsequent transshipping. 

Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 provides the President with the ability to restrict imports that the Department of Commerce determines are harmful to U.S. national security. Section 232 requires the Department of Commerce to review the impact of foreign competition on the domestic industry deemed essential for national security, such as the steel and aluminum industries. 

On January 11, 2018, Secretary Ross submitted the Department of Commerce’s investigation into the effect of steel mill product imports on the United States. Subsequently, on January 22, 2018, the Secretary released the Department’s investigation into the effect of wrought and unwrought aluminum imports on the United States. 

Upon receipt of the two reports, the President has 90 days to determine the nature and duration of actions recommended by the Secretary of Commerce to offset adverse import effects.