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U.S.-Russia Joint Steel Dialogue
The U.S. Commerce Department and Russia's Ministry of Economy and Trade today signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a joint steel dialogue in the U.S.-Russia Business Development Committee (BDC) under the aegis of the Binational Commission. The Dialogue will focus on a broad range of structural issues affecting the Russian steel industry.
As part of the President's Steel Action Program announced last year, the U.S. Department of Commerce is conducting a comprehensive study of the 1998 U.S. steel crisis, its causes and what steps can be taken to prevent future crises. Because Russia accounts for a substantial share of global steel capacity and was one of the major exporting countries contributing to the surge, Russia figures prominently in this report. The duration of the Comprehensive Steel Agreement provides stability in steel trade between the U.S. and Russia, as well as an opportunity to address some of the structural issues that brought us to this agreement. These factors are addressed in the report.
The BDC's successful Joint Commercial Tax Dialogue demonstrated that such a mechanism offers the flexibility needed for actively involving relevant government and private sector representatives in a complex of issues cutting across a broad range of issues pertinent to government and private sector interests.
The Joint Steel Dialogue will run on three tracks: a high-level government-to-government component; joint government-industry discussions and activities in which both industry (including unions) and governments develop programs; and direct industry-to-industry and union-to-union contacts devised and managed by the private sector.
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