Ross: US steel demand to rise in case of major conflict
United States Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in an interview on Thursday that in case the US enters a major military conflict, the demand for steel would grow significantly.
He noted that the current problem is that the defense industry uses some very specific alloys of steel that are only produced by foreign suppliers. He also noted that skilled workers are crucial for national defense and that people who lost their jobs recently in the industry must be rehired soon before they lose their skills.
Ross said that the steel industry is currently operating in the US at 71% of capacity and there is room to expand to 80-85% operating capacity.
The commerce secretary went on to accuse the European Union, China and Japan of protectionism, saying they only “talk the rhetoric of free trade” but are, in fact, more protectionist than the US.
Earlier, US President Donald Trump started a probe into foreign steel imports.