TimkenSteel Corp., which provides steel products and services for the oilfield, is closing a major location in Houston early next year because of reduced activity in an “evolving energy market,” a top executive said.
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ConocoPhillips Co. and Encana Marketing (USA) Inc. are challenging Plains All American’s plans to implement a surcharge on its Cactus II crude oil pipeline, a 5.0-cent/bbl fee designed to offset costs related to U.S. tariffs on steel imports.
The United States on Friday agreed to lift steel and aluminum tariffs imposed on North American trading partners Canada and Mexico, removing one major impediment to enacting the Trump administration’s proposed United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA).
A plan purportedly under consideration by the Trump administration to replace tariffs on steel imported from Canada and Mexico with a quota system would “cripple expansion of U.S. oil and natural gas production because of supply restrictions,” according to the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners (TIPRO).
A new trade deal between the United States, Canada and Mexico is expected to have a modest impact on the oil and gas industry, and reduced uncertainty between the trading partners could lead to an eventual lifting of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, according to analysts. However, they warned the ongoing trade dispute with China could worsen.
As the oil and gas industry grapples with tariffs on imported steel and a byzantine process for bypassing them, the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) urged the Trump administration to “understand and address” the unintended consequences of both actions, especially the increased burden on the industry’s small businesses.
In a development that could put even more pressure on domestic natural gas pipeline projects, the Department of Commerce said it has preliminarily determined that Canada, China, Greece, India, South Korea and Turkey have been selling large diameter welded pipe at less than fair value in the United States.
Less than two weeks after the Trump administration rejected Plains All American Pipeline LP’s request for an exemption to a tariff on imported steel it already purchased for a pipeline in the booming Permian Basin, the COO urged House lawmakers to work to improve the exemption request process.
Officials with the American Petroleum Institute (API) said their member oil and gas companies are frustrated with the process that the Trump administration established to request exemptions to tariffs on imported steel, with several petitions — including one for a pipeline to service the booming Permian Basin — already rejected on vague grounds.