April 14, 1999
News Release 99-052


Despite numerous challenges, U.S. chloralkali producers appear to be competitive in foreign and domestic markets on the basis of price, quality, and security of supply, says the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) in its report Industry and Trade Summary: The Chloralkali Chemicals.

This competitive position has held despite predictions that demand for chlorine, a major product of the chloralkali industry, would plummet as a result of environmental concerns about the toxicity of chlorine-based derivatives. Other problems encountered by the industry include increased foreign competition and increased use of substitutes. For example, growth in demand for soda ash, another major chemical product of the chloralkali industry which is largely used in the production of glass, was curtailed because substitute materials such as plastics and aluminum were making increased inroads in the glass container market.

The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding federal agency, recently released the report as part of an ongoing series of reports on the thousands of products imported into and exported from the United States. Following are other highlights of the report:

The foregoing information is from the ITC report Industry and Trade Summary: The Chloralkali Chemicals (USITC Publication 3158, March 1999).

ITC Industry and Trade Summary reports include information on product uses, U.S. and foreign producers, and tariff treatment of the products being studied; they analyze the basic factors affecting trends in consumption, production, and trade of the commodities, as well as factors bearing on the competitiveness of the U.S. industry in domestic and foreign markets.

This report will be available on the ITC's Internet server at www.usitc.gov. A printed copy may be requested by calling 202-205-1809 or by writing the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. Requests may be faxed to 202-205-2104.

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