Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies has formally requested that SA be excluded from US duties on steel and aluminium. This comes after President Donald Trump, in a presidential proclamation published late last week, temporarily exempted the EU, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Australia, Brazil and South Korea from 25% tariffs on steel products and 10% tariffs on aluminium. As "friendly nations", these countries have until May 1 to negotiate levies on steel and aluminium. But their exemption means South African steel exports to the US will be hit with a 25% duty. Paolo Trinchero, CEO of the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction, says SA’s formal submissions "will involve a substantial amount of time and money, with no guarantee of success". He says the tariff applies to primary steel and some secondary products such as tube and pipe. Products with high value-add such as machinery are not included, Trinchero says. "I think the US approach is to flag items which are easy to cl...

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