International Trade:

Administration of Short Supply in Steel Import Restraint Agreements

T-NSIAD-89-35: Published: May 23, 1989. Publicly Released: May 23, 1989.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed its review of the Department of Commerce's process for evaluating steel short supply requests. GAO found that Commerce's Office of Agreements Compliance: (1) did not issue regulations or comprehensive guidelines on the program's operation and petition requirements; (2) did not make public the reasons and results of its reviews; (3) based its decisions on whether the requested steel was available domestically; (4) reduced the time for making its decisions from an average of 236 days in 1986 to 81 days in 1988, but did not have a standard deadline for completing its reviews and did not have a good method for measuring its timeliness; and (5) did not have complete documentation on almost half of the 143 petition files examined.

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