For Immediate Release: July 21, 2004
Contact - BIS Public Affairs 202-482-2721
The Commerce Department has determined that neither monitoring nor controls on exports of copper and copper-alloy scrap are necessary.
The Copper & Brass Fabricators Council, Inc. and the Non-Ferrous Founders’ Society filed a short supply petition on April 7, 2004 requesting that the Commerce Department impose monitoring and controls on exports of recyclable metallic materials containing copper. The Commerce Department carefully reviewed and analyzed this petition in accordance with Sections 3(2)(C) and 7(c) of the Export Administration Act (EAA), as amended.
The Department’s findings regarding the five statutory determinations are as follows:
(1) The volume of exports of copper-based scrap has increased significantly over the time period presented in the petition, 1999-2003 and year-to-date 2004. Decreased domestic consumption, including the closure of the last independent U.S. secondary smelter, has been an important factor in the rise of exports. Accordingly, the increase in exports is somewhat less significant when it is considered in relation to domestic demand, as required by the statute.
(2) Copper scrap prices have increased significantly during the time period presented in the petition, 1999-2003 and year-to-date 2004. However, the evidence does not demonstrate the existence of a shortage.
(3) The world market for copper cathode, not the level of U.S. exports of copper-based scrap, is the most important determinant in the fluctuation of domestic copper scrap prices.
(4) The evidence does not demonstrate a significant adverse effect on the national economy or any sector thereof resulting from the domestic copper scrap price increase.
(5) Monitoring, export controls, or both, are unnecessary at this time in order to achieve the policy of Section 3(2)(C) of the EAA.
Although the Commerce Department did not find sufficient evidence to warrant imposing monitoring or export controls, it will work to refine the Schedule B classifications for copper and copper-alloy scrap in order to better delineate the varieties of scrap that are being exported. The Commerce Department also will work closely with the Office of the United States Trade Representative and the Department of State to address any foreign government practices that are distorting trade in copper and copper-alloy scrap.