Today, the Global Forum on Steel Excess Capacity ministerial meeting was held in Berlin and chaired by Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Brigitte Zypries. The Global Forum on Steel Excess Capacity goes back to an initiative taken at the summit in Hangzhou (China) held from 4 to 5 September 2016 and was formally established on 16 December 2016 under the German G20 presidency. Its goal is to address the causes of excess capacity in the global steel market and to present ways in which this can be reduced. The Global Forum has a total of 33 members (G20 countries, interested OECD countries and representatives of the OECD). Today’s meeting marks the end of the German G20 presidency, whilst at the same time putting into practice the Hamburg G20 Declaration as far as steel is concerned.
Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy Brigitte Zypries said: “I am delighted that the G20 countries and other OECD countries have been able to agree on a report on steel, setting out concrete recommendations for reducing global capacities in the steel sector. I would like to thank all of the members of the Global Forum for their good and constructive cooperation. We have succeeded in adopting a report that puts into practice the Hamburg G20 Declaration as far as steel is concerned. This is a great success to round off the German G20 Presidency.
Overcapacities in the steel sector are a global phenomenon that requires a global answer. The Global Forum is the right platform for this. This has been highlighted by the presentation of today’s report. We need open markets and fair trade that is based on a level playing field, and not only in the steel sector but across all industries. This is the only way in which we can restore a balance that benefits all sides.
Another important point is that the report on steel that has been adopted today provides a good basis for the Argentinian G20 presidency to build upon, paving the way for continuing the work of the Global Forum in a dedicated and systematic manner.”
The core messages set out in the report on steel are:
- Part 1: “Global cooperation to find solutions to tackle excess capacity in the steel market”
Core message: The members of the Global Forum agree that addressing global overcapacities requires swift and tangible solutions. The intensive exchange of information that has taken place between the members of the Global Forum serves as the basis for developing these solutions.
- Part 2: “Government policies, measures and practices in Global Forum member economies”
Core message: The exchange of information that has taken place between the members of the Global Forum highlights the heterogeneity of the steel sector policies employed. This shows that a common frame of reference is needed in order to develop policy solutions.
- Part 3: “Concrete policy solutions recommended by the Global Forum”
Core message: The members accept the fundamental principles underlying the work within the Global Forum. These include enhancing the functioning of the market, restructuring, transparency and the global nature of excess capacity. These principles give rise to concrete policy solutions for addressing the overall framework in the steel industry, market-distorting subsidies, the creating of a level playing field in the steal market, national targets for increasing and reducing capacity, mergers and acquisitions, export credits and transparency. The members agree on a roadmap to be implemented by 2018.