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July 19, 2019

Washington will not impose extra duty on Canadian uranium

A year ago the U.S. Department of Commerce initiated an investigation into whether imports of uranium threaten to impair the United States' national security (Section 232). A positive determination could have resulted in the imposition of special customs duties, in a way similar to the duties that were recently imposed on steel and aluminum.

Canada is the main exporter of uranium to the United States with a share of about 24%. Owners and operators of U.S. nuclear power reactors purchased the equivalent of about 40 million pounds of uranium in 2018. About 10% of uranium purchases in 2018 were from U.S. suppliers, and 90% came from other countries.

On April 14, 2019, the U.S. Secretary of Commerce transmitted his report to the President, finding that uranium imports threaten to impair the national security of the United States.

Last week, on July 12, 2019, the President announced in a memo that he did not concur with the Secretary's finding that uranium imports threaten to impair the national security of the United States as defined under Section 232.

Extra duties will not be levied at this point. The president appointed a working group to further study the industry.


 

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