NTU Calls on Biden Administration to Remove “National Security” Trade Sanctions on Israel

National Taxpayers Union today called on the Biden administration to remove import restrictions on steel and aluminum from Israel. 

The Trump administration imposed broad-based tariffs on imported steel and aluminum based on authority granted by Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. Section 232 allows the president to restrict imports that are found to allegedly impair U.S. national security. 

“President Biden should immediately remove sanctions on Israel imposed under Section 232,” said Bryan Riley, director of NTU’s Free Trade Initiative. “More broadly, the administration should remove all Section 232 sanctions affecting U.S. allies. Imports of steel and aluminum from our allies do not threaten U.S. national security.” 

At the time of implementation, the Manufacturers Association of Israel called the tariffs a “death blow.” Reps. David Schweikert (R-AZ) and Brad Schneider (D-IL) asked the Trump administration to exempt Israel from steel and aluminum tariffs: “We do not believe imports of steel and aluminum from Israel are a threat to U.S. national security.” 

There is precedent for the Biden administration to remove these tariffs. Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, President Biden suspended tariffs on steel imports from Ukraine. He should similarly suspend tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum from Israel.