US Steel will fire up Granite City Works mill

Andrew Cummings
March 10, 2018

Trump announced last week that he would impose tariffs of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on imported aluminum and is expected to sign the measure later this week.

Trump has said the tariffs are needed to preserve American industries and protect national security.

The move also could increase demand for taconite iron ore from the company's Minnesota mines.

United States Steel Corporation plans on restarting one of two blast furnaces and associated steelmaking facilities in Granite City, bringing back approximately 500 workers beginning later this month.

About 2,000 workers were laid off when U.S. Steel idled the St. Louis-area plant in late 2015.

"Our Granite City works facility and employees, as well as the surrounding community, have suffered too long from the unending waves of unfairly traded steel products that have flooded US markets".

"This will absolutely lead to layoffs", Miller said, explaining that USA producers do not make the steel slabs he needs to supply sheet steel to customers like Caterpillar Inc CAT.N and automakers.

Granite City and an AK Steel Holding Corp AKS.N mill in Ashland, Kentucky, are the only two idle US plants sufficiently well maintained to be brought back any time soon, industry analysts said. "The community was built around this steel plant, the community wasn't built first". Between them, they have 5.3 million tons of capacity available.

Simmons predicted the US-made steel will be competitively priced.

The union's answer is it may be sooner than you think.

"The USW welcomes this announcement from U.S. Steel and looks forward to working with the company during the restart process to ensure it is done safely and efficiently".

Steel suppliers like California Steel Industries Inc CAST.UL , which imports 1.5 million tons of steel slabs annually, argue that Trump's bid to save USA steel jobs will cost them.

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