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China imposes anti-dumping duties on steel tubes from EU, Japan

By Liang Fei (Global Times)

08:03, May 09, 2012

China will require importers of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes from the European Union (EU) and Japan to pay anti-dumping deposits starting today, the Ministry of Commerce said yesterday on its website, finalizing an investigation launched in September.

The preliminary ruling shows that the EU and Japan have been dumping high-
performance stainless steel seamless tubes into China, which has caused material damage to domestic producers, said the ministry.

The investigated steel tubes are mainly used in boilers in power stations. The ruling said that low-priced imports from the EU and Japan directly compete with domestic producers, whose products are not much different from the imported ones.

Ma Zhongpu, chief analyst at commodity information portal chinaccm.com, noted that Chinese producers had been "immensely affected" by the cheap imports of the products.

Currently, imports from the EU and Japan account for some 50 percent of the domestic stainless steel seamless tube market, according to the ruling, and certain types of products even account for nearly 90 percent of the domestic market.

The ruling also said that prices of such tube imports from the EU and Japan had dropped 16.74 percent each year from 2008 to 2010.

"Facing competition from cheap imports, domestic producers also have to cut prices, and that has greatly eaten into their profits," Ma said.

The ministry said that importers of high-performance stainless steel seamless tubes will have to pay anti-dumping deposits to China's customs authorities starting from today. And the deposits will be charged in accordance with the dumping margins of different companies - at rates ranging from 9.7 percent to 39.2 percent of the customs value of the imported goods.

Ma told the Global Times yesterday that the government's anti-dumping ruling can, to some extent, help domestic steel producers reduce losses.

But He Weiwen, co-director of the China-US-EU Study Center under the China Association of International Trade, said that China has been a defendant far more times than being a prosecutor in international trade disputes, and the imbalance should be reduced.

The Chinese steel industry has been under pressure recently with several anti-dumping cases. The US government announced on May 1 that it would impose anti-dumping and countervailing duties on Chinese high-pressure cylinders. In March, it said it would investigate dumping of stainless steel sinks from China.

In December, the EU decided to impose anti-dumping duties ranging from 48.3 percent to 71.9 percent on Chinese stainless steel seamless tubes.

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