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WTO Rules Against China In Steel Anti-Dumping Dispute

by Ulrika Lomas,, Brussels

20 February 2015

The World Trade Organization (WTO) has ruled against China in a dispute concerning its anti-dumping duties on certain high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes from Japan and the European Union.

China imposed the duties in 2012 at rates of between 9.7 percent and 11.1 percent for EU exporters, and between 9.2 percent and 14.4 percent for Japanese exporters.

Japan and the EU opposed the duties, alleging that they violated various procedural and substantive provisions of the WTO's Anti-Dumping Agreement and Article VI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 1994.

The WTO's Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) set up a panel in 2013 to mediate in the dispute. On February 13, 2015, the panel issued a report in which it upheld most of the complainants' claims.

The panel found that the Chinese measures did not fully respect the prescribed WTO methods to calculate dumping margins. It also said that China failed to demonstrate that its domestic industry had been adversely affected by imports of the product in question, and said that Chinese anti-dumping procedure came short of the WTO requirements in terms of due process and transparency.

"In international trade we all need to play by the rules. I am glad that the WTO panel confirms this today [by] asking China to bring its customs duties in line with the WTO obligations," said EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström. "I hope to see China reacting to this ruling immediately and restoring fair trading conditions for EU producers."

China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) said in a statement that it would exercise its right to appeal the panel's ruling.

High-performance stainless steel seamless tubes are used mainly for super heaters and reheaters of super-critical boilers in power stations, MOFCOM said.

TAGS: tax | anti-dumping | World Trade Organisation (WTO) | China | trade disputes | import duty | trade | Japan | Europe

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