VNA reported that escalating trade tensions and rising protectionism have caused a formidable pressure on Vietnamese steel sector. The Vietnam Steel Association has said local steel producers faced difficulties in the first months of 2019 when prices averaged just 650 USD per tonne, a fall of 12 percent compared to the same time last year, driven by trade tensions. VSA Vice President Mr Trinh Khoi Nguyen said abundant steel supply and cheap steel and iron products originating from China have exerted intense pressure on local steel industry.
VSA recommended that the Government should not approve or grant license for new steel projects, especially products with abundant supply such as cold/hot rolled steel, structural steel and galvanised steel products. Meanwhile, local firms are suggested not to expand investment at this time.
In addition, competent authorities need to raise technical barriers for imported products while policies and measures should be put in place to prevent the shift to Vietnam, including from China, of the investment and production that has unsuitable technology, consumes much energy and cause environmental pollution.