Steel Producers Advance Policy Priorities to Strengthen the Industry in Canada



    OTTAWA, April 1 /CNW Telbec/ - The Canadian Steel Producers Association
(CSPA), in meetings this week in Ottawa, will outline its key policy
priorities to keep Canada's steel industry strong and positioned for future
investment.
    "Canada's steel industry has been an important part of the industrial
landscape for a very long time," said Ron Watkins, President of CSPA. "While
much has changed in our industry in recent years, we fully intend to remain an
integral part of the economic future."
    The immediate priority for steel producers is rapid action to rebuild
demand for steel across the economic spectrum. Canada's steel industry is tied
to the market conditions facing other major sectors, including manufacturing,
energy, construction, and natural resources. As a result, steel industry
capacity utilization has fallen sharply in the past 6 months, to below 50
percent, resulting in difficult cutbacks by steel producers.
    "The economic situation today is clearly very serious", said Watkins.
"But we also need to develop a policy environment for the longer-term that is
focused on investment and jobs in Canada." Specifically, the steel industry is
looking for government policy actions that will strengthen the manufacturing
base, encourage fair trade, balance environmental and economic policy, and
develop the skilled workforce needed for the future steel industry.
    The Canadian steel industry has gone through a remarkable transformation
in recent years, with leading global steel companies investing over $11
billion in Canada. Bringing not just capital, but also technologies, skills,
and business opportunities, these investments strengthen the basis for future
success of the steel industry in Canada.
    Steel is the building block of many industry value chains; it is a
significant employer, and a customer for over 5000 suppliers. CSPA
representatives stressed that policy priorities must create conditions that
will attract future investment and reinvestment into Canadian steelmaking.
    "Government policies now, and for the medium term, are an important part
of that equation," continued Watkins. "That is, fundamentally, what we wish to
discuss with Members of Parliament and policymakers this week, and beyond.
With supportive public policies, steel will continue to make Canada stronger."

    The CSPA is the national industry organization for Canadian producers of
steel and steel pipe and tube. Our members operate facilities in 8 provinces.
In 2008, CSPA members employed approximately 30,000 thousand Canadians, and
produced approximately $14 billion in steel products.




For further information:

For further information: Michael Powell, CSPA Public Relations, Cell:
(613) 797-7313, mike@impactcanada.com

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CANADIAN STEEL PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION

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