Canton Repository

December 6, 2001

Timken to get $31 million in trade relief 

By PAUL M. KRAWZAK
Copley News Service

WASHINGTON — Timken Co. will receive $31 million in trade relief in the first payout from a year-old law that punishes unfair trade.

The payout to Timken is higher than to any other Ohio steel maker. Timken, based in Canton, makes bearings and specialty steel.

Two other Ohio-based steel companies, Republic Technologies International, based in Fairlawn, and LTV Corp., based in Cleveland, also have money coming as a result of the law.

Overall, the federal government will distribute more than $200 million to American manufacturers, farmers and other companies that suffered from unfair imports in the past year.

Republic will get $60,309. The company has plants in Canton and Massillon. Payouts to LTV include $534,269 to LTV Steel and $330,963 to LTV Copperweld, a subsidiary that makes pipe and tube.

Republic and LTV both have filed for Chapter 11 protection from bankruptcy amid the worst times for steel since the 1980s. LTV has
asked a federal bankruptcy court for permission to close its steel plants in Cleveland, Indiana Harbor, Ind., and Hennepin, Ill.

The Continued Dumping and Subsidy Offset Act, passed last year, redirects the proceeds from anti-dumping and countervailing duties to American companies hurt by foreign competition. In the past, this revenue went to the U.S. Treasury.

Sen. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, author of the law, hopes it will “help our domestic steel industry, a critical industry to our economy and national security, by lessening the negative impacts of dumping and subsidization.”

The federal government imposes anti-dumping duties on imports after determining they were dumped, a trading practice that involves selling products below cost. Duties make the products more expensive. As a result, Americans are less likely to buy them.

Timken did not say how it plans to spend the money.

“I think it’s just premature to talk about money, the receipt of it or the use of it until we receive any money,” company spokesman Mike Johnson said. “We do expect to receive it soon.”

Timken’s payout is derived from duties imposed on imports of tapered roller bearings, said Wes Irvin, spokesman for DeWine. Johnson declined to discuss the source of the payments to Timken.

A spokesman for Republic said it was the first he had heard that the money was on its way. He did not know how it would be spent.

Under the law, companies can spend the money on plants or equipment, research and development, new technology, environmental improvements or health and pension benefits.