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36. Memorandum From the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs (Bergsten) to Secretary of the Treasury Blumenthal 1

SUBJECT

  • Steel Industry’s Request for Import Quotas

The presidents of 8 steel companies lunched with Bob Strauss today, and laid on the table their specific proposals for resolving their complaint under Section 301 of the Trade Act.2

Their primary demand was for immediate imposition of import quotas against all major and minor suppliers. Specifically, they want to roll back Japanese sales from the current level of 8 million tons per year to 5 million tons.

The industries claimed that 3 steel firms will fail in the absence of such action. As far as I am aware, there was no discussion of pricing policy.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 56, Records of Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs C. Fred Bergsten, 1977–1979, Box 1, FT-9 Manufactured Products 1977. Confidential; Nodis. Reviewed by Hessler and the Executive Secretariat on July 1. Copies were sent to Solomon and Brill. A typed notation at the top of the page reads: “Noted by W.M.B.”
  2. No memorandum of conversation of this meeting was found, but see Document 51. Regarding the steel industry’s case, see Document 30 and footnote 7 thereto.