Steel in Honduras: Opposition to Protectionism

In response to the authorities' consultation on the request for a safeguard measure on the import of steel products, the builders are opposed on the grounds that this would make materials more expensive, in addition to making their production inefficient.

Monday, February 24, 2020

This is not the first time that builders are against this issue, since in November 2019, directors of the Honduran Chamber of the Construction Industry (Chico), requested the government to eliminate the safeguards on imports of steel-based products, since they claim that these measures promote monopolistic practices.

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Because in recent weeks, a group of small national producers asked the authorities for safeguard measures, the Secretariat of Economic Development asked different sectors for their technical opinion on the subject.

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Gustavo Boquín, president of Chico, told that "... the people who have requested the safeguard are small producers, but they produce very little and what they are looking for is to leave out the importers who do not produce."

Boquín added that he "... disagrees that an increase in steel tariffs should be imposed, as they must be kept at zero to be competitive."

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More on this topic

Builders Against Protectionism

November 2019

The Honduran construction union asked the government to eliminate the safeguards on imports of steel-based products, because they assure that these measures promote monopolistic practices.

Directors of the Honduran Chamber of Construction Industry (Chico), indicated that the safeguard applied to steel sheets and rods are detrimental to the construction industry and this translates into an increase in prices.

Protectionism vs. Free Market

December 2018

In Costa Rica, the government's decision to reject ArcelorMittal's request to raise the import tax on steel rods generated such a conflict that the company assured that "it has no incentive to keep its production in the country."

After concluding its investigation, the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce (MEIC) decided to reject the request of the manufacturer ArcelorMittal to apply a safeguard measure on imports of alloy and non-alloy steel rods.

Controversy Over Steel Rod Import Tariff

May 2018

ArcelorMittal has requested the restoration of a 15% import duty on steel rods, arguing that "the vast majority of these imports enter the country without paying taxes, taking advantage of a legal loophole".

After the reaction from the construction sector, the steel rod manufacturer in Costa Rica, ArcelorMittal, justified its decision to request an investigation from the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce (MEIC) to decide if it will impose a safeguard measure and impose a 15% tariff on imports of the product.

No to Taxing Imports of Steel Rods

May 2018

In Costa Rica, the builders union has opposed the suggestion by Arcelor Mittal to establish a safeguard measure and charge a 15% import duty on rods.

Following the request by the company ArcelorMittal de Costa Rica S.A. in November 2017 to the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce (MEIC), to impose a 15% tax on imports of used iron rods for construction, the Costa Rican Chamber of Construction (CCC) reported that since March 19, the MEIC started a process to evaluate whether or not to apply the measure.

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