New EU sanctions on Russia could have a significant impact on British steel producers sourcing raw materials around the world. So they need to urgently review the legislation, warns the Confederation of British Metalworking (CBM).
New rules coming into force from September 30 require proof that ore and steel used to produce goods in a third country are outside the EU, including the UK, do not come from Russia. Materials testing certificates will be required to confirm the site and location where the material was originally melted and cast, as well as for secondary steel processing processes.
CBM President Stephen Morley says many firms will not be aware of these export changes . This could result in products being held up at customs and, in some cases, trigger “catastrophic production stoppages in the critical automotive and aerospace sectors,” he told The Manufacturing magazine.
“It is important to recognize that the scope of EU measures iron and steel products extends far beyond primary and secondary steel products to many finished goods, including fasteners and other industrial consumables. They will also cover many 'retail' items such as ovens, ranges, kitchen and plumbing fixtures," Morley notes.
"Essentially, it's preparing for the worst-case scenario while fervently hoping that EU authorities are aware that the stringency of compliance requirements will jeopardize the flow of supplies from the UK into EU supply chains,” he adds.
“There are many mixed messages at the moment, with some suggesting that the German Customs may take a more pragmatic stance on what evidence is required, while recent information from Belgium and France suggests a more stringent approach,” continues Morley.
“These sanctions - across the board - may to have a significant impact on both UK exporters and importers as many of our members source their steel from all over the world. This is a sensitive issue and our best advice is to plan ahead to avoid supply chain disruptions,” warns Morley.
CBM represents UK manufacturers of fasteners, forgings and stampings, cold rolled and sheet metal.
New sanctions have recently caused Turkish billet buyers to delay orders from Russia to assess their impact.