Court postpones iron billet import duty hearing to 5 October
Court postpones iron billet import duty hearing to 5 October: The Supreme Administrative Court has postponed to 5 October its ruling on appeals filed by the State Lawsuits Authority and a number of iron and steel companies against the suspension of a 15% import fee on iron billets, according to Masrawy. This is the third time the hearing has been postponed since mid-August. A lower administrative court in July turned down the Trade Ministry’s appeal to reimpose the 15% duty, which it lodged after 21 iron factories won a case at the court reversing the ministry’s decision.
Background: The Trade Ministry imposed a 15% import fee on iron billets and a 25% fee on steel imports in April. The decision was brought to court by a number of rolling mills who said the increased prices of iron had forced them to halt production. This led the administrative court to suspend the decision in July.
Trade Ministry claims 80% of steel jobs will disappear without protectionist measures: Steel companies will not be able to continue production without import fees, forcing them to lay off 80% of their direct labor force, according to a ministry report picked up by the local press.