Iron Assisi sul New York Times

Claudio Capponi

Anche il New York Times parla dell’Iron Assisi.. ecco uno stralcio dell’articolo pubblicato dal New York Times il 22 Agosto 2018.

On the afternoon when word broke that Mr. Trump would not exempt Europe from his metals tariffs, Claudio Capponi was struggling to calculate the impact.

He is the commercial director of IRON, a publicly traded company that makes industrial parts. Its factory sits in Assisi, in the central Italian province of Umbria. Until the moment that the American president rendered his decision, Mr. Capponi was confident the Continent would be spared.

“Europe is too good of a trade partner for the United States for President Trump to do this,” he said.

Giant coils of steel shipped from mills in France were spread across the concrete floors of his factory. As the sound of pounding metal echoed through the cavernous plant, machines sliced steel into customized shapes — arms for earth movers destined for the United States, silos to hold wind turbines, decks of cargo ships.

Given that IRON is a buyer of steel, the company might benefit from the American tariffs. Steel now shipped to the United States from mills within Europe might stay here to avoid the tariffs, raising the supply and lowering prices locally even as they increase in much of the world. Chinese producers that export to American shores could divert their product to Europe, amplifying this trend.

But Mr. Capponi was banking on none of this. Even if he pays less for steel, his customers are likely to squeeze him for lower prices. More broadly, the American tariffs — justified by the Trump administration as a defense of national security — reverberated as a blow against world trade.

“We depend on access to a global market,” Mr. Capponi said. “It’s the uncertainty that is driving us mad. We are looking out the window at what is going on outside of our factory. We’re worried about the precedent of these tariffs. We are worried the forces of protectionism are being set loose. The landscape is so unclear.”

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