The European Commission released a statement in August 2019, affirming that while steel safeguard measures have overall been successful during the first year of implementation, they require further adjustments.
The safeguard measures were initially introduced provisionally in July 2018, to prevent harm to the EU steel industry, which was being affected by US tariffs. The EU steel industry was hit by a 12% increase in imports of finished steel products in 2018. As a result, the measures were later definitively introduced in February 2019.
The European Commission outlined three proposals in the communication, cutting an increase in import quotas to 3% from 5%, adjusting the functioning of the quota for some products, and updating the list of exclusions for developing countries. The proposal is expected to be discussed with affected World Trade Organization members and be submitted to EU Member States for approval ahead of the October implementation. The measures are expected to become effective by October 1, 2019.