Bei­jing slaps EU, Ja­pan, S Korea with steel du­ties

The Myanmar Times - - Business -

CHINA said yes­ter­day it has started im­pos­ing anti-dump­ing tar­iffs on cer­tain steel im­ports from the Euro­pean Union, Ja­pan and South Korea, as Bei­jing it­self comes un­der fire for sim­i­lar trade prac­tices.

Du­ties on the ma­te­ri­als, used in power trans­form­ers and elec­tric mo­tors, will range from around 37 per­cent to as high as 46.3pc, the com­merce min­istry said on its web­site.

The mea­sures are in­tended to pre­vent the sale of the prod­uct at be­low cost, a prac­tice known as dump­ing, it added.

The world’s sec­ond-largest econ­omy, which makes more than one-half the world’s steel, finds it­self un­der at­tack by EU coun­tries for al­legedly flood­ing world mar­kets with steel and alu­minium in vi­o­la­tion of in­ter­na­tional trade agree­ments.

On July 22 Premier Li Ke­qiang told a group of visit­ing lead­ers from the World Bank, the In­ter­na­tional Mone­tary Fund and other or­gan­i­sa­tions that China “will not en­gage in a trade war or cur­rency war”.

Nev­er­the­less, the EU sees it­self un­der at­tack. Ear­lier this month in Bei­jing, EU Com­mis­sion head Jean claude Juncker pledged to de­fend the group’s steel in­dus­try against China us­ing “all the means at our dis­posal”.

He also said there was a “clear link” be­tween the steel is­sue and the EU’s de­ci­sion on whether to grant China “mar­ket-econ­omy sta­tus” – a prize ea­gerly sought by Bei­jing. China has been press­ing the EU to grant it the sta­tus – which would make it harder for the bloc to levy anti-dump­ing tar­iffs – be­fore the year’s end, cit­ing World Trade Or­gan­i­sa­tion rules.

China’s an­nounce­ment is the lat­est in a tit-for-tat spat with other coun­tries over the spe­cial metal known as ori­ented elec­tri­cal steel.

In May last year the EU im­posed sim­i­lar du­ties on im­ports of Chi­nese-ori­ented elec­tric steel as well as prod­ucts from other coun­tries, in a move which Bloomberg News said was in­tended to curb com­pe­ti­tion for EU producers.

The de­ci­sion prompted China to launch an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into im­ports from the Euro­pean man­u­fac­tur­ers.

China has im­posed such du­ties be­fore. In 2012 the World Trade Or­gan­i­sa­tion ruled that Chi­nese du­ties on high-tech steel from the US vi­o­lated trade rules. In 2015 the or­gan­i­sa­tion cen­sured Bei­jing for con­tin­u­ing the prac­tice de­spite the judge­ment against it.

PER­CENT 46. 3 High point for du­ties on ma­te­ri­als used in power trans­form­ers and elec­tric mo­tors im­posed by China

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