Congressman Pete Visclosky

Representing the 1st District of Indiana

Visclosky Testifies before the ITC in Support of the American Steel Industry

Feb 12, 2019
Press Release

Washington, DC – Below is the testimony of Congressman Pete Visclosky before today’s International Trade Commission hearing in support of the American steel industry, as prepared for delivery:

I would like to thank Chairman Johanson, all of the members of the Commission, and your staff, for your hard work to ensure that all American workers, and those in the domestic iron and steel industry, are protected from injury because of violations of U.S. trade law.  I deeply appreciate this opportunity to testify as part of today’s hearing regarding cast iron soil pipe from China.

As you know, cast iron soil pipe is used in our commercial infrastructure, including in stadiums and high-rises, for plumbing, drainage, and ventilation.  This strong piping can last for decades, thus creating durable and sustainable development in commercial sectors throughout our economy.

Today, I am here to testify because of the pervasive dumping and subsidizing by our foreign competitors that leaves our domestic industry struggling to compete.  As you are aware, the Commerce Department has determined the preliminary antidumping duty margin to be 302 percent and the subsidy rate to reach up to 111 percent.  The extent of this dumping and subsidizing is grossly unfair.  

Some have argued that all the challenges of the American steel industry have been solved by the recent Section 232 or Section 301 tariffs, but I would point out that despite cast iron soil pipe from China being subject to 10 percent tariffs under Section 301, this case indicates that the U.S. industry is still being harmed by illegal trade activity. 

I remain seriously concerned that China continues to be a repeat offender of U.S. trade laws.  We cannot let one more sector of our domestic industry be harmed by such unfair competition.  We must remain vigilant and send an irrefutable message to repeat offenders that illegal trade will not be tolerated.

As I mentioned at my recent Town Forums in Northwest Indiana, I was initially scheduled to testify at this hearing in January, but the ITC, like many other agencies of our government, was impacted by the lapse in government funding and therefore unable to hold this hearing and continue this vital investigation on schedule.  

Every day this and other cases are delayed, we are allowing foreign offenders to continue to harm our domestic industries.  I want to thank the Commissioners and their staff for making up seven days of time as the hearing was originally intended to be rescheduled with a delay equal to the length of the government shutdown.  I believe the quick turnaround to get this case and other cases completed is testament to the ITC’s diligent and committed work.

One of our government’s essential functions is to protect American workers and our domestic industry from the illegal economic activity of foreign nations, and I will continue to work hard to ensure the ITC is funded without interruption for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2019 and for future fiscal years so that it can perform its investigative work, and judiciously and expeditiously resolve cases, like this one, without delay.

I thank the Commission for conducting this critical investigation into cast iron soil pipe from China, and I urge an affirmative decision for enacting trade remedies in order to ensure our domestic producers can compete on a level playing field.