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Steel mills hit by trade measures

By Chen Yang (Global Times)

08:21, February 19, 2013

A series of anti-dumping and countervailing investigations into Chinese steel products have been launched by the European Union, Australia and Canada since the beginning of 2013, posing challenges to the already struggling domestic steel industry, experts said Monday.

The latest one was initiated by the EU, which opened an anti-dumping investigation Saturday into imports of the China-produced seamless steel tubes with an outer diameter exceeding 406 millimeters.

In 2012, the amount of these steel tubes exported by China to the EU had a total value of $91.53 million, China's Ministry of Commerce said Saturday.

"Currently Tianjin Pipe (Group) Corp, Hebei Iron and Steel Group, Liaoning-based Benxi Steel Group and Angang Steel Co are major mills that have steel exports to the EU, so they will be affected by the EU's investigation," He Hangsheng, a steel industry analyst at Sun Sirs Commodity Data Group, told the Global Times Monday.

Four days before the EU's move, Australia launched anti-dumping and countervailing investigations into China-made hot-rolled steel products. On January 22, Canada initiated anti-dumping and countervailing investigations into imports of zinc-coated steel wires from China.

China is the world's largest exporter of steel products, so it is easy for the country to become the main target of rising global trade protectionism, experts said.

"The amount of steel exports involved in recent investigations is not large, but a series of these actions has sent a signal of increasing trade protectionism," He said.

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