For the ten months ending October 2017, beam/structural imports to the U.S. totaled 1,016,727 tons, down 1.8% compared to the same period in 2016. Imports of fabricated beam/structural are increasing at an alarming rate having more than doubled since 2011.

There are four HTS codes considered in this report. These include: Bridge/Bridge Section, Fabricated Structural – Other, Fabricated Beams and Fabricated Beams – Other. Sixty-five percent of the volume is classified as Fabricated Structural – Other, 18% Fabricated Beams – Other, 17% Fabricated Beams and less than 1% Bridge/Bridge Section. Figure 1fabricatedbeams-fig1 shows the year on year growth for each of these four categories.

Total fabricated beam/structural imports to the U.S. peaked in 2016 at 1,230,624. Annualizing 2017 year to date tonnage through October, the total for the year will be very comparable at 1,220,072. As Figure 2 fabricatedbeams-fig2illustrates, volume has picked-up considerably since 2010, 2011 when fabricated beam/structural imports totaled around 500,000 tons. From 2011 to 2012, imports jumped 26%, followed by a 5% increase to 2013, a 10% increase to 2014. In 2015 volume surged by 42% to over one million tons, followed by a 19% increase in 2016 to 1.23 million tons.

The largest exporting countries in 2017 were China, Canada and Mexico with 400,311, 193,660 and 184,052 tons of beam/structural imports respectfully. The next largest exporters were Taiwan at 31,230 tons, followed by Germany with 28,899, Italy at 27,273, Korea at 20,239, Spain at 20,070 and United Arab Emirates with 17,118 tons. Rounding out the top ten exporters of beam/structural imports was Vietnam with 14,137 tons. India (13,493) and Luxembourg (11,985) also shipped considerable tonnage in 2017.

At Gerdau we closely follow trade in long products steel since it has a profound impact on domestic market share and material pricing. We want you, our valued customers to have access to current information that can help you better plan and operate your businesses.