International news within the industry of mining and metal, Apr, 23 2018
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US shipbuilding suppliers may suffer from Trump's custom taxes

Huntington Newport News Shipyard in Virginia. Photo:  Huntington Ingall, media
Huntington Newport News Shipyard in Virginia. Photo: Huntington Ingall, media
Published by
Markku Björkman - 11 Apr 2018

Huntington Ingalls Industries, the United States largest shipbuilder, recently announced that the new steel and aluminium safety charges announced by the Trump government will not lead to higher prices in the country's shipbuilding industry in the short term, but it is possible that these customs tariffs will raise prices for shipbuilding suppliers.

"Huntington's Newport News Shipyard in Virginia holds a multiannual financial agreement that guarantees stable steel pricing," said Jennifer Boykin, chairman of Newport News Shipbuilding in Newport News, Virginia, recently for reporters at the Sea Air Space Fair in the National Harbor, in Maryland State.

While the agreement ensures that Huntington Ingalls's steel costs will not increase dramatically, the company does not know whether or not their domestic suppliers face rising price spirals.

Boykin said that her company is waiting for answers from several subcontractors as to whether potential tariffs will affect their pricing and costs.

Huntington Ingalls is planning the construction of two aircraft vessels in the next few years. Each of these can cost more than 13 billion dollars.

President Donald Trump has announced 25 percent tax on steel imports and 10 percent on aluminium but has offered exemptions to several countries. Although the US defence industry mainly uses American steel, higher prices would globally affect metals that have been extracted and processed in the United States.

The EU and thus Sweden are also threatened by these duties. China responded to these with a list of 128 goods from the US who get a 25 percent duty.

Then the United States stamped the conflict with 25% new duties on about 1,300 technology, transport and medical products from China for an estimated value of $ 50 billion. China has subsequently, on Wednesday, followed up with a threat of new tariffs on 106 US goods, including 25 percent duty on soya beans, cars and chemicals worth $ 50 billion.

At the same time, the United States and China threaten each other with reference to the WTO for violations of trade organization rules.

Source: Reuters