Megasteel urges Govt to protect local steel producers

16 December 2015

Megasteel Sdn Bhd, the biggest hot roll coils (HRCs) producer, says the Government needs to protect local steel producers to prevent job losses from closure of steel mills.

“In contrast to the picture painted by The Malaysian Iron and Steel Industry Federation (Misif), Megasteel is not the only steel company affected by the excessive steel imports and submitting trade remedy petitions,” Megasteel said yesterday.

The company issued a statement following a news report that Misif was against a proposal by Megasteel to set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to import HRCs and downstream products into Malaysia.

The company said that since 2013, there had been a spate of petitions submitted by local steel players for protection as the entire steel industry was affected by an oversupply situation due to excessive dumping.

“We foresee that the petitions will not cease until the global steel markets have stabilised,” it said.

“In the interim period, local steel producers need to be shielded in some forms. Otherwise, the closure of steel mills will cause loss of jobs and irreparable future damage to the manufacturing competitiveness of Malaysian downstream manufacturers,” it said.

Megasteel added that the Government could only take action if there was a petition submitted by an industry player who had been injured by the excessive dumping.

“Despite the allegations by Misif and its call to the Government to reject Megasteel’s petition for safeguard measure for HRC production, several Misif members who are the downstream users of HRC are in support of the safeguard petition to protect the interests of the local HRC and downstream industry.

Currently there are 19 trade remedy measures on steel products implemented by various countries against Malaysia’s steel exports.

Megasteel recently proposed that the Government set up a SPV solely to import HRCs and downstream steel products. However, it was reported that Misif said the proposal, if implemented, would infringe the Malaysian Competition Act 2010, especially on abuse of dominant position.

The association said it would give Megasteel an unfair advantage over other manufacturers, having access to confidential information such as who was buying which product, from where it was buying it and at what price.