The United Steelworkers (USW) union today filed a comprehensive trade case under Section 301 of the trade law identifying a broad array of Chinese policies and practices that threaten the future of America’s alternative and renewable energy sector. The case alleges that China has utilized hundreds of billions of dollars in subsidies, performance requirements, preferential practices and other trade-illegal activities to advance its domination of the sector.
The USW filed the petition with the office of United States Trade Representative this morning. The 5,800-page submission identifies five major areas of protectionist and predatory practices utilized by the Chinese to develop their green sector at the expense of production and job creation here in the U.S. Under the law, the Obama Administration has 45 days from the date of filing to determine whether to accept the petition for further action. This will put the Administration’s decision date on or before Oct. 24.
“Green jobs are key to our future,” said Leo W. Gerard, International President of the USW. “Right now, China is taking every possible step – many of them illegal under international trade laws – to ensure that it will control that sector. America can’t afford to cede more of its manufacturing base to China.
“It’s a national priority to reduce our dependence on foreign energy supplies. But if all we do is exchange our dependence on foreign oil for a dependence on Chinese alternative and renewable energy production equipment, we will have traded away our nation’s energy, economic and job security.”
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