Coalition Government protects Aussie workers and trade

The Coalition Government has secured an important exemption for Australian steel and aluminium exports to the United States, as US president Donald Trump considers tough sanctions on foreign steel companies.

Federal Member for Gilmore, Ann Sudmalis said the Government has done the right thing to protect Australian jobs and business, particularly workers that could have been directly affected from the BlueScope Steel Port Kembla plant who live in Kiama and the Shoalhaven.

“US imposed tariffs on foreign steel companies, on the basis that the glut was hurting US steel jobs, would have impacted Australia’s largest manufacturers BlueScope Steel and Rio Tinto which has significant steel and Aluminium exports to the US,” she said.

Australian exports stood to be directly ­affected by new US tariffs with steel exports to the States worth about $US130 million and its aluminium exports worth $62.5 million.

“The prime minister spoke to President Trump directly at the G20 summit, explaining the Australian position and our concern that should the United States decide to pursue any trade measures in relation to steel and aluminium as a result of their current investigation, then we would like to see Australia exempted from any such measures,” said Mrs Sudmalis.

The US has been investigating the effect of cheap imports since April and is expected to make an announcement in the coming weeks about its response to the global excess of steel.