The Commerce Department’s Office of Policy and Strategic Planning is currently seeking information on the construction and maintenance of American pipelines to inform its forthcoming plan to the President for the domestic sourcing of pipeline materials.  In accordance with the President’s January 24, 2017 Presidential Memorandum on the “Construction of American Pipes,” the agency is collecting information for its plan on “the domestic sourcing of materials for the construction, retrofitting, repair, and expansion of pipelines inside the United States.”  The Commerce Department seeks information to enhance its understanding of the following items:

  • Current pipeline construction technology and requirements
  • Potential advances in pipeline technology
  • Domestic and foreign supply chain for pipeline materials
  • All other information considered pertinent to the development of Commerce’s domestic sourcing plan

This is an excellent opportunity for members of multiple U.S. industries to comment on the current and anticipated availability of American raw materials, inputs, and other construction and maintenance materials for new and existing pipelines.  Timothy C. Brightbill, a partner in Wiley Rein’s International Trade Practice, recently discussed in a Steel Business Briefing article, that, in particular, the data for this request are poised to show that U.S. manufacturers have the ability “to immediately produce much greater quantities of US line pipe using American-made steel.”

Responses to Commerce’s request for information are due by April 7, 2017, either electronically via regulations.gov or by mail to the Office of Policy and Strategic Planning.  Commerce will protect business proprietary information that is marked as such and filed in paper submissions.  Additional information on the submission of responses to Commerce is found in the notice posted by the agency here.

Note:  Wiley Rein represents U.S. clients in the line pipe and steel industries.