The [U.S.] Department of Commerce (DOC) reports that steel imports for January 2005 dropped to 2.2 million metric tons, an 18 percent decline compared to December 2004, the fourth straight month of declining imports. Precision Metalforming Association president William E. Gaskin, commenting on the DOC report, also notes that imports of hot-rolled sheets, the products most used by PMA members, also declined for the fourth straight month, to 0.2 metric tons, a 6-percent decline compared to December. Gaskin used the news on steel imports to renew PMA?s call for the lifting of duties on hot-rolled steel, and will testify, along with representatives from PMA member companies, in Washington D.C. on March 2 at the sunset review hearing of the International Trade Commission. The hearing will address whether to terminate or continue antidumping/countervailing duties on hot-rolled steel from Japan, Brazil and Russia beyond the five years they have already been in place.
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